Sep 12

- Obama’s Broad Coalition Cracks – UK, Germany Won’t Support Airstrikes In Syria (ZeroHedge, Sep 11, 2014):

Well that didn’t take long. After espousing his strategy last night of leading a broad coalition against ISIS, it appears President Obama’s “allies” are backing away from the plan. As The WSJ reports, Germany and the U.K. on Thursday ruled out carrying out air strikes on Islamic State militants in Syria. It appears the Europeans, realizing the ire that these actions will likely cause to Putin, are stepping back – “We haven’t been asked, nor will we do it,” German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier told reporters and his U.K. counterpart Philip Hammond explicitly ruled out air strikes in Syria, after the U.K. parliament struck down such a move last year. So that leaves the French?

As The WSJ reports,

Germany and the U.K. on Thursday ruled out carrying out air strikes on Islamic State militants in Syria, a day after President Barack Obama authorized the start of U.S. air strikes there. Continue reading »

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Sep 11

Russian Retaliation Begins: Gazprom “Limiting EU Gas”, Cuts Poland Supplies By 20% In Past Two Days (ZeroHedge, Sep 10, 2014)

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Sep 11

- US Chopper Squadron Invades Poland, Accidentally (ZeroHedge, Sep 10, 2014):

No, this is not from The Onion. Bloomberg reports that six U.S. army helicopters landed in a rapeseed field in northern Poland to ask for directions after veering off course on their way back from military exercises. Locals were alarmed and explained, “we know that security is the most important thing right now… But thank God it was the Americans.” We wonder how long before Sikorski proclaims this an invasion and demands NATO react… 

20140910_gruta_0

As Bloomberg reports,

Five Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters and one tandem-rotor Boeing Co. Chinook chopper touched down near the village of Gruta, 220 kilometers (140 miles) north of Warsaw at about noon yesterday, according to local eyewitnesses. Some residents were at first spooked at the sight of the aircraft, Halina Kowalkowska, the village’s head, said by phone.

“We know that security is the most important thing right now,” Kowalkowska said. “But thank God it was the Americans.” Continue reading »

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Sep 09

- JPMorgan Stunner: “The Current Episode Of Excess Liquidity Is The Most Extreme Ever” (ZeroHedge, Sep 8, 2014):

“The ECB’s quantitative expansion is hitting the financial system at a time when broad liquidity is also very high. The rise in excess liquidity, i.e. the residual in the model of Figure 3, is supportive of all assets outside cash, i.e. bonds, equities and real estate. The current episode of excess liquidity, which began in May 2012, appears to have been the most extreme ever in terms of its magnitude and the ECB actions have the potential to make it even more extreme, in our view…. These liquidity boosts are not without risks. We note that they risk creating asset bubbles which when they burst can destroy wealth leading to adverse economic outcomes. Asset yields are mean reverting over long periods of time and thus historically low levels of yields in bonds, equities and real estate are unlikely to be sustained forever.”
– JPMorgan

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Sep 09

- Here Is Why Europe Just Launched The “Nuclear Option” Against Russia (ZeroHedge, Sep 8, 2014):

Europe’s leaders, we assume under pressure from Washington, appear to be making a big weather-related bet with their taxpayers’ lives this winter.  As they unleash funding sanctions on Russia’s big energy producers, Europe has pumped a record volume of natural gas into underground inventories in an effort to ‘outlast’ Russia and mitigate any Napoleonic “Winter War” scenario. The plan appears to be to starve Russian energy firms of cashflow – as flows to Europe are already plunging – and remove their funding ability, potentially forcing severe hardship on Russia’s key economic drivers. There appears to be 3 potential problems with this plan…

As Bloomberg reports,

Europe’s reliance on Russian natural gas shipments via Ukraine is declining after the region pumped a record volume of the fuel into underground inventories, minimizing the risk of shortages during the coming winter.

20140908_Russia Continue reading »

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Sep 09

Farmers go hungry as Russian agricultural import ban begins to bite (euronews, Sep 5, 2014):

The tit-for-tat sanctions between Russia and the EU and US is beginning to hurt farmers and the fishing industry.

Russia’s ban on most agricultural imports is having knock on effects across Europe. Continue reading »

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Sep 09

Physical gold and silver (stored outside the banking system!) will protect your financial assets.

Even more important will be water, food, …, etc.


- On The Brink Of A Major Crisis: “This Will Be A Literal Collapse of the Entire Global Monetary System” (SHFTplan, Sep 6, 2014):

Discussions of the possible collapse of the U.S. dollar often center around how such an event will affect the domestic economy. But the dollar doesn’t just operate inside of a bubble. It is the world’s reserve currency for a reason. Some sixty-six countries world-wide either utilize it as their primary currency or peg their own currencies to its exchange rate. What this means, as noted by Future Money Trends in the micro documentary below, is that if and when the dollar does come under attack the fallout will be everywhere. The collapse will happen simultaneously and affect billions of people worldwide.

This is 33% of the nations of the world all submitting their currency sovereignty to the US Federal Reserve.

If and when the U.S. loses its currency status this will be a literal collapse of the entire global monetary system… A system that is built on lies, fraud and theft.


(Watch at Youtube)

As you might have guessed, when the game is finally up it will wreak havoc across global economies, financial markets and monetary systems. Should that ever happen, those who have failed to exchange their fiat currencies for physical goods of some sort are going to have a rude awakening. Continue reading »

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Sep 09

Dr. Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury during President Reagan’s first term. He was Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal. He has held numerous academic appointments, including the William E. Simon Chair, Center for Strategic and International Studies, Georgetown University, and Senior Research Fellow, Hoover Institution, Stanford University.

- The West Paves The Road To War With Lies — Paul Craig Roberts (Paul Craig Roberts, Sep 5, 2014):

Official statements from the Russian government indicate that the president and foreign minister continue to rely on the good will of “our Western partners” to work out a reasonable diplomatic solution to the trouble in Ukraine caused by Washington. Not only is there no evidence of this good will in Western capitals, the hostile measures against Russia are increasing. Moreover, hostile measures are on the rise even though their main effect is to disadvantage Europe.

For example, the socialist president of France has followed Washington’s orders and refused to deliver a ship that it owes to Russia under contract. The news reports are so incompetent that they do not say whether Russia has paid for the ship or whether payment was awaiting completion. If Russia has not already paid, then the failure to deliver will harm whoever financed the construction of the ship. If Russia has paid, then the idiot French president has placed France in violation of a contract and under international law France is subject to heavy financial penalties. Continue reading »

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Sep 08

SUICIDE-GUN

- Europe Goes “All In”: Will Sanction Rosneft, Gazprom Neft And Transneft (ZeroHedge, Sep 7, 2014):

Until this moment, the main reason why everyone mostly dismissed Europe’s sanctions against Russia is that despite all its pompous rhetoric, Europe consistently refused to hit Russia where it would hurt: its energy titans Gazprom, Rosneft And Transfneft. The reason is simple: by imposing sanctions on these core energy exporters, Europe would directly threaten the stability of its own energy imports (Russia accounts for up to 30% of German gas imports), and as winter approaches with every passing day, playing with the energy status quo would seem like economic suicide. This all appears to have changed last Friday, when as the FT reports from a leaked copy, Europe’s latest sanctions round will boldly go where Europe has never dared to go before, and impose sanctions on the big three: Rosneft, Gazprom Neft and Transneft.

This is what is known in game theory terms as a major defection round. Continue reading »

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Sep 08

Obama-Sanctions-Costs

Russia’s Gazprom to fall under new EU capital ban – sources (RT, Sep 7, 2014):

Russia’s Gazprom Bank and oil producer Gazprom Neft will fall under new sanctions approved by the European Union on Friday, Reuters cited an EU diplomat as saying. The sanctions reportedly include a new ban on raising capital in the 28-nation bloc.

The sanctions were agreed against Russia for its alleged role in the Ukrainian crisis, the diplomatic source said. Continue reading »

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Sep 07

- ‘Sharia controlled zone’ in Germany: Group of young Muslims patrolling city streets  (RT, Sep 6, 2014):

Police in the German city of Wuppertal are investigating a case of several young men who announced themselves to be ‘Sharia police’. The group was ‘patrolling’ the streets, urging people to refrain from various sorts of activities and entertainment.

The young men wearing orange safety vests with the words “Shariah police” written on the back caught both residents’ and police attention in Wuppertal in North Rhine-Westphalia in western Germany earlier this week.

The young men are followers of Salafism, a puritanical form of Islam, one of the world’s fastest-growing Islamic movements. The fundamentalists have been seen in the city’s nightlife area, trying to urge people to refrain from alcohol, drugs, gambling, pornography and other activities. They also reportedly distributed leaflets with the same guidelines.Police reportedly stopped 11 men aged between 19 and 33. An investigation with possible charges of illegal assembly has been launched.

The government is considering the Sharia initiative an act of provocation and says it won’t tolerate any “parallel law“.

No Sharia laws will be tolerated on German soil. No one has the right to tarnish the good image of the German police,” the country’s Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere reportedly said in an interview to Bild.

Germany’s Justice Minister Heiko Maas said that “no illegal ‘parallel law’ will be tolerated,” as only the state is responsible for law compliance. Continue reading »

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Sep 06

- Europe Needs A New Source of Oil and Gas, Fast (Oil Price, Sep 4, 2014):

Summer is over and many Europeans may have to keep warm this coming winter by thinking about their summer holidays while wrapped in blankets, praying for a short winter or for the world to come to its senses. It both cases, they may well be disappointed.

The never-ending conflicts in the Middle East, mayhem in Libya, uncertainty in the Gulf and a war in Ukraine are all going to take a toll on the energy supplies this winter.

Russia sold 86 billion cubic meters of gas last year, all of which passed through Ukraine. Given what’s happening there now, it is highly unlikely that the Russians would allow their gas to transit a country they are (unofficially) at war with. Just as it is unlikely that Ukrainians would allow Russian gas access through its territory. Continue reading »

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Sep 05

Obama-Sanctions-Costs


us-preparing-economic-sanctions-russia
(L-R) French President Francois Hollande, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, U.S. President Barack Obama, British Prime Minister David Cameron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi meet to discus Ukraine at the NATO summit at the Celtic Manor resort, near Newport, in Wales September 4, 2014 (Reuters / Alain Jocard)

- US, EU preparing new round of economic sanctions against Russia (RT, Sep 4, 2014):

The United States is planning a new round of sanctions aimed at the Russian Federation over the ongoing crisis in Ukraine, the White House said on Thursday, and the European Union is reportedly on the verge of doing the same.

Reuters reported on Thursday that the White House is working on a new wave of sanctions against Russia, which may be imposed in tandem with embargoes expected to be announced by European Union representatives later this week. The newswire made the announcement as the White House participated in a conference-call with reporters. Continue reading »

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Sep 05

- NATO to give Ukraine 15mn euros, lethal and non-lethal military supplies from members (RT, Sep 4, 2014):

NATO has pledged some 15 million euros to Ukraine, with several of the bloc’s member states pledging separate bilateral support and military cooperation, involving medical supplies as well as lethal and nonlethal military equipment.

NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen announced a “comprehensive and tailored package of measures” including the donation of 15 million euros “through NATO” at a joint news conference with the Ukrainian president on Thursday on the first day of the NATO summit in Wales. Continue reading »

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Sep 05

Related info:

- Making $400,000 PER HOUR, The Best Paid Hedge Fund Manager In 2013 Was …


David-Tepper

- David Tepper Is Back, Sees “Beginning Of The End” Of Bond Bubble (ZeroHedge, Sep 4, 2014):

It has been a while since Tepper warned of “nervous time” and told his hedge fund pals “don’t be too freakin’ long.”

Since then the manipulated equity market bubble has gone straight up with every single dip bought massively by the algos, in the process surely eliminating any nervous thoughts Tepper may have had. So in a world starved for pundit philosophy, Bloomberg just reported that the bond market bubble is about to pop, at least according to the folicularly challenged billionaire. The reason, paradoxically enough, the ECB’s decision to monetize private assets and cut rates.

Continue reading »

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Sep 05

- “God of Crude Oil Trading” Goes All In On Crude At $150 Bet (ZeroHedge, Sep 3, 2014):

How many times in the last few years have you (or any of Europe’s less-than-core leaders) said to yourselves- “EU, what’s the point?” All this ceding of sovereignty, centralization of power, relinquishment of decision-making; and for what? The answer – of course – free-er trade, a customs union enabling cross-border trade to flourish and in the great economics textbooks of the world for each member state to do what they do best (German VWs and Greek yogurt?) and maximally profit from that. That all sounds wunderbar in practice… except this rather uncomfortable truth-seeking chart shows that the last decade has seen an accelerating decline in intra-European-Union trade, especially in the last 4 years – to levels that are now below those pre-EU. So, once again, “what’s the point?”

Source: Bruegel

20140903_EU

Note: The above figure shows intra-EU and intra-Eurozone shares of export on total export of the two groups respectively. Each of the two lines were constructed taking into account the changing composition of the European Union and the Euro Area over time, meaning that a given country is included in the series only by the time it joined the EU or the Euro. However, further calculations shows results do not change dramatically if considering a fixed group of countries in either series. Continue reading »

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Sep 04

Related info:

- U.S. Media Controlled By Just Six Corporations (INFOGRAPHIC)


- Falsehoods in the NYT’s Editorial, ‘Mr. Putin Tests the West in Ukraine’ (Washington’s Blog, Sep 3, 2014):

The only way to expose lies is within context; so, this will have to be lengthy.

The Times  editorial opens with a falsehood: “There is no longer any doubt: Russian troops are in Ukraine, not as volunteers, as the rebel commander in Donetsk would have the world believe, but in units equipped with mobile artillery and heavy military equipment.” Their only cited source for that statement is “a senior NATO officer.” But should anyone take as a source, on that type of matter, either an anonymous U.S.-NATO official, or an anonymous Russian official? That’s hardly an unprejudiced “source,” in either case — and it’s their only source on this. Continue reading »

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Sep 04

NATO Delivering Democracy Since 1949

NATO Vs Russia (In 99 Seconds) (ZeroHedge, Sep 4, 2014):

NATO has often seemed to lack purpose, and now, as The Guardian explains in this excellent 99-second primer on how we got here; at its summit in Wales this month NATO faces one of its biggest challenges in years – the defense of Europe against Russia…

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Sep 04

- Is This Why Obama Is Rushing To This Week’s NATO Summit?  (ZeroHedge, Sep 3, 2014):

As is well-known, tomorrow, September 4, a NATO summit begins in Wales to discuss and coordinate the western response to ongoing “Russian intervention” in Ukraine (not to be confused by US intervention in Ukraine meant to remove an standing, democratically-elected president), a summit for which Barack Obama has demonstrated impressive enthusiasm following his blitz tour of Europe, a continent reeling on the edge of a recessionary abyss courtesy of the “costs” Obama has imposed on Germany Russia in the aftermath of the Victoria Nuland-instituted local Kiev government.  

Perhaps it has something to do with this…

Continue reading »

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Sep 04

- European Parliament Releases Q&A on GMO Cultivation (Sustainable Pulse, Sep 2, 2014):

The European Parliament (EP) has released a Q&A summary regarding GMO cultivation in the bloc ahead of Wednesday’s EP debate on the subject.

Source: European Parliament

The EU has one of the toughest genetically modified food regulations in the world and the cultivation of GM crops is only allowed following a thorough risk assessment. Yet, as member states are calling for more possibilities to restrict GMO cultivation on their territories, the European Commission has proposed some amendments to the current EU rules. The Parliament and the Council are currently looking at these proposals. Read on to learn more.

Is it allowed to grow genetically modified crops in the EU?

Continue reading »

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Sep 04

hollande-bilderberg

- France Folds; Suspends Shipment Of Russian Warship – NATO Allies Pleased (ZeroHedge, Sep 3,  2014):

France is suspending the delivery of the 1st of 2 hulking Mistral warships to Russia amid security concerns about Moscow’s actions in neighboring Ukraine, AP reports President Francois Hollande’s office said Wednesday. Hollande’s change of mind – as he begs Draghi to devalue the EUR and Schaeuble to lift the deficit limits in Europe – comes at a time when the French economy can hardly cope with losing a few billion (which he previously said was too costly to cancel) but as he explains, Russia’s recent actions harm “the foundations of security in Europe.” We will see what Hollande got for this… or how he was blackmailed – but for now NATO allies have commented that they “welcome the French Mistral sale suspension.” Continue reading »

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Sep 03

Your Wall Street Slumlord Arrives in Europe

- Your Wall Street Slumlord Arrives in Europe – Goldman and Other Financial Firms Launch “Buy to Rent” in Spain (Liberty Blitzkrieg, Aug 28, 2014):

Liberty Blitzkrieg was early in reporting on the trend of financial firms entering the U.S. residential real estate market with “all-cash” bids for tens of thousands of homes with the intention of turning former homeowners into permanent sources of rental income. The first of many pieces I published on the topic was in January 2013, titled: America Meet Your New Slumlord: Wall Street.

Now that the financial oligarchs have had their way with the U.S. property market, to the point that average citizens can’t even afford to own a home (Zillow recently showed that 1 in 3 homes are unaffordable), it appears they have turned their sights overseas. What better market for bailed-out bankers to feast on than Spain, with its 50%+ youth unemployment rate and a continued depressed real estate market.

We learn from Bloomberg that: Continue reading »

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Sep 03

- The Chart Obama Does Not Want Merkel To See (ZeroHedge, Sep 2, 2014):

The weekend’s headlines reeled from the collapse in global manufacturing PMIs and with them the last best hope for the world’s economies to reach escape velocity all on their own. However, there was one nation that did not plunge… there was one country whose growth (based on the soft survey data) is at 10-month highs. Perhaps this is the chart that President ‘we need moar sanctions and costs’ Obama does not want Angela ‘umm, wait a minute’ Merkel to see…

Since sanctions began the plunge in Euro-Area PMIs has been commensurate with the rise in Russia’s (oh and according to survey-data, US is as good as it has ever been)…

20140901_PMI_0

*  *  *

Seems pretty clear who is paying the price and suffering the costs of Western sanctions…

When does Europe draw its own red line around Obama’s sanctions?

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Sep 02

Merkel-and-Putin

- American Intelligence Officers Who Battled the Soviet Union for Decades Warn Germany Not to Fall for Anti-Russian Propaganda (Washington’ Blog, Sep 1, 2014):

Senior U.S. Intelligence Officers: Beware Flimsy “Intelligence”

MEMORANDUM FOR: Angela Merkel, Chancellor of Germany

FROM: Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS)

SUBJECT: Ukraine and NATO

We the undersigned are long-time veterans of U.S. intelligence. We take the unusual step of writing this open letter to you to ensure that you have an opportunity to be briefed on our views prior to the NATO summit on Sept. 4-5.

You need to know, for example, that accusations of a major Russian “invasion” of Ukraine appear not to be supported by reliable intelligence. Rather, the “intelligence” seems to be of the same dubious, politically “fixed” kind used 12 years ago to “justify” the U.S.-led attack on Iraq. Continue reading »

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Sep 02

Here we go again …


- Ukraine Defense Minister Warns Of “Worst Conflict Since WWII”, Shifts Forces To “Combat Full-Scale Russian Invasion” (ZeroHedge, Sep 1, 2014):

Unless they are tilting at windmills, the rhetoric this morning from Ukraine’s defense minister is the strongest and most actionable yet. Via his Facebook page, Valeriy Galetey accused Russia of “open aggression,” and explained that:

  • *RUSSIA SHIFTED TO ‘FULL-SCALE’ INVASION OF DONBAS, GELETEY SAYS
  • *UKRAINE HALTS ATTEMPTS TO DISLODGE REBELS: DEFENSE MINISTER
  • *UKRAINE SHIFTS FOCUS TO HALTING RUSSIAN INVASION, GELETEY SAYS

Earlier in the morning, US Senator Bob Menendez said he has “no doubt Russia has invaded Ukraine,” and following Ukraine requests for assistance from Europe and US, NATO responded by noting a reaction force or 3-5,000 can be ready in 48 hours. Continue reading »

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Sep 02

Never Gazprom, never Gazprom!


putin smile_0

- More Sanctions: Europe Will Ban Purchase Of Russian Bonds; However Russian Gas Exports Remain Untouched (ZeroHedge, Sep 1, 2014):

Over the weekend, insolvent, debt-dependent Europe thought long and hard how to best punish Russia and moments ago reached yet another milestone in deep projective thought: as Reuters reports, Europeans could be barred from buying new Russian government bonds “under a package of extra sanctions over Moscow’s military role in Ukraine that European Union ambassadors were to start discussing on Monday, three EU sources said.” This will be in addition to the ban on the debt funding of most Russian corporations. So as Europe’s 7-day ultimatum for the Kremlin to “de-escalate” counts down, Putin has a choice: continue operating under a budget surplus and ignore Europe’s latest and most amusing hollow threat which is merely a projection of Europe’s biggest fears, or spend himself into oblivion as Europe has done over the past decade and become a vassal state of the Frankfurt central bank.. Somehow we doubt Putin will lose too much sleep over this latest “escalation”…

Some more details on today’s latest threat by Europe, which if nothing else has sent the ruble to a fresh record low against the dollar, leaving Europe green with envy at such currency debasement, and boosting Russian exports even more: Continue reading »

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Sep 02

- To Everyone Saying Russia Is “Isolated”, Here’s A Map (ZeroHedge, Sep 1, 2014):

While NATO is happy to provide Russia with geographical advice, we thought the following map of “the world” will help explain President Obama’s increased use of the term “isolated” when it comes to Russia…

Russia-isolated
(Click on image to enlarge.)

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Sep 02

Commentary:

‘Bilderberg Merkel’ is only another elite puppet, like Bilderberg puppets Schmidt, Kohl and Schröder before her.

angela-merkel

Germany cannot do anything on its own. The problem is that under the ‘Geheime Staatsvertrag’ (= secret treaty) as reported by the former German MAD (= Militärischer Abschirmdienst = Military Counterintelligence Service) chief Gerd-Helmut Komossa all German media and the chancellor itself  are under control by the allied forces (US, UK, France) until 2099.

die-deutsche-karte

The ‘Geheime Staatsvertrag’ also regulates that the German gold reserves stay exactly where they are (as collateral).

Here is an …

Internal BND (Bundesnachrichtendient) document only for ministers (“NUR Für Minister”)

T O P   S E C R E T ( Strengste Vertraulichkeit)

It states that copy No.4 of the ‘Geheime Staatsvertrag’ has been lost and also describes in detail what it has been all about.

The document further states that if copy No. 4 of the ‘Geheime Staatsvertrag’ gets into the wrong hand its authenticity should be denied.

geheimerstaatsvertragkopie4teil_1

geheimerstaatsvertragkopie4teil_2

Also there is a quote by Egon Bahr, minister from 1972 bis 1976 under Chancellor Willy Brandt, stating that Brandt had to sign 3 letters for the ambassadors of the US, the UK and France.

Brandt was reportedly disgusted by having to sign this ‘Unterwerfungsbrief’ (letter of subjugation), but was told that Konrad Adenauer, Ludwig Erhard and Kurt Georg Kiesinger had to sign these letters as well.



Sep 1, 2014

Dr. Jim Willie joins me to present some important recent developments that bode ill for the dollar as Germany / France and other former allies and partners of the US are now aligning themselves with Russia / China and the BRICS bloc.

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Sep 02

Nicolas-Sarkozy-hand-sign nicolas-sarkozy-handsign

- Operation Sarkozy : how the CIA placed one of its agents at the presidency of the French Republic (Voltairenet, July 26, 2008):

Tired of the overextended presidencies of François Mitterrand and Jacques Chirac, the French elected Nicolas Sarkozy counting on his energy to revitalize their country. They were hoping for a break with years of no-change and ideologies of the past. What they got instead was a break with the very principles which founded the French nation, and have been shocked by this “hyper-president”, seizing every day a new dossier, attracting towards him the right and the left wing, and tearing apart all points of reference to the point of creating a total confusion.

Like children who have just made a boo-boo, the French are too busy trying to find excuses for themselves to admit the magnitude of the damages and of their naiveté, and they refuse all the more to see who Nicolas Sarkozy really is, that they realize they should have known since a long time who he was. Continue reading »

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Sep 01

From the article:

Putin concluded, perhaps ominously,“they should have known that Russia cannot stand aside when people are being shot almost at point-blank.”

… which is exactly why the elitists have created all this chaos in the Ukraine.

The elitists have planned WW3 for us.


- Putin Calls For “Immediate Talks” Over Eastern Ukraine “Statehood” (ZeroHedge, Aug 31, 2014):

Vladimir Putin, who has repeatedly said that he does not favor the break-up of Ukraine – but only greater autonomy for the East, appears to have changed course rather dramatically today. In a speech broadcast on Russian TV, the Russian leader stated “we need to immediately begin substantive talks… on questions of the political organisation of society and statehood for southeastern Ukraine.” As The Washington Post reports, use of the word “statehood” reflects a major shift in Kremlin policy towardsNovorossiya – it would be a direct challenge not only to Kiev but also to Western European nations and the United States, which have been trying to force Moscow to back down. While not directly addressing the latest round of sanctions chatter, Putin concluded, perhaps ominously, “they should have known that Russia cannot stand aside when people are being shot almost at point-blank.”

Novorossiya

As AFP reports,

President Vladimir Putin today dramatically raised the stakes in the Ukraine conflict by calling for the first time for statehood to be considered for the restive east of the former Soviet state.

“We need to immediately begin substantive talks… on questions of the political organisation of society and statehood for southeastern Ukraine with the goal of protecting the lawful interests of the people who live there,” Putin was quoted as saying by Russian news agencies on a TV show broadcast in the far east of the country. Continue reading »

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