Monday, January 5, 2015

Czech Leader: 'Something Wrong With Ukraine, EU' - Condemns Nazi Torchlight Parade, Tension Between U.S. And N Korea Escalates

'Something Wrong With Ukraine, EU': Czech Leader Condemns Nazi Torchlight Parade

The chilling slogans and a flagrant demonstration of nationalist symbols during the neo-Nazi march in Kiev reminded the Czech President Milos Zeman of Hitler's Germany. He said something was “wrong” both with Ukraine and the EU which didn’t condemn it.
Zeman was commenting on the appalling scenes, which showed thousands of Ukrainian nationalists holding a torchlight procession across the Ukrainian capital on Thursday to commemorate the 106th birthday of Stepan Bandera, a Nazi collaborator and the Ukraine nationalist movement’s leader during World War II.
"There is something wrong with Ukraine,” the Czech Republic's leadertold radio F1 on Sunday. “Yesterday evening I was browsing the Internet and discovered a video showing the demonstration on Kiev’s Maidan on January 1.”

“These demonstrators carried portraits of Stepan Bandera, which reminded me of Reinhard Heydrich,”Zeman said referring to one of the main architects of the Holocaust and at the time a Reich-Protector of Czech Republic’s territories.
“The parade itself was organized similar to Nazi torchlight parades, where participants shouted the slogan: ‘Death to the Poles, Jews and communists without mercy,Zeman explained.
Bandera was the head of the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN), which collaborated with Nazi Germany, and was involved in the ethnic cleansing of Poles, Jews and Russians.
“Glory to the nation! Death to enemies!", "Ukraine belongs to Ukrainians" and "Bandera will return and restore order", were the repeated slogans during the neo-Nazi march. Some of the participants wore World War II Bandera's insurgent army uniforms while others paraded with red and black nationalist flags.
The Czech President said something is “wrong” not only with Ukraine, but also with the European Union, which did not protest or condemn this action.
"Don't forget that Bandera is considered a national hero in Ukraine, his image is hanging in the Maidan, his statue is in Lvov. In reality, he was a mass murderer," Zeman said last summer on Czech Television.
Russia too has on numerous occasions condemned the resurgence of neo-Nazi traditions in Ukraine and considers such displays of militant nationalism as means to fabricate history.
“Torch-lit marches in Ukraine demonstrate that it is continuing to move along the path of the Nazis!”Konstantin Dolgov, the foreign ministry's human rights envoy, said last week. “And this is in the center of civilized Europe!"

Tension between the United States and North Korea further escalated over the weekend as Washington imposed new economic sanctions Friday against Pyongyang in retaliation for the reclusive regime’s alleged cyberattack on Sony Pictures Entertainment.

The North’s Foreign Ministry responded angrily to the punitive measures Sunday, saying that America’s “tenacious adherence” to a hostile policy toward the North would further reinforce its will to protect its sovereignty.

U.S. President Barack Obama signed an executive order Friday, while on vacation in Hawaii, to approve sanctions against three North Korean organizations and 10 senior officials as part of his “proportional response” to the attack on Sony that produced the “Interview,” a comedy about a scheme to assassinate North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.

Announcing the decision, the White House accused the North of carrying out “provocative, destabilizing and repressive actions and policies, particularly its destructive and coercive cyberattack on Sony Pictures.” It also said, “Today’s actions are the first aspect of our response.” 

The sanctions came as Pyongyang has hardened its rhetoric against the U.S., while continuing its peace offensive toward the South and refraining from launching its usual verbal attacks against Seoul.

“The U.S. is wholly responsible for its hitherto antagonistic, hostile relationship with North Korea. The U.S. should throw away its hostile policy toward the North,” said a piece in Saturday’s edition of the Rodong Sinmun, the daily of the North’s ruling Workers’ Party.

“Should the U.S. come forward with good will while respecting our sovereignty without intervening in our internal affairs, we would respond to that accordingly.” 

The two Koreas have moved closer to dialogue since the North Korean leader demonstrated his desire to hold a “top-level meeting” with the South and restore cross-border ties in his New Year address.

Slowly but surely Europe is figuring out that as a result of the western economic and financial blockade of Russian, it is Europe itself that is suffering the most. And while Germany was first to acknowledge this late in 2014 when its economy swooned and is now on the verge of a recession, now others are catching on. Case in point: the former head of the European Commission, and Italy’s former Prime Minister, Romano Prodi who told Messaggero newspaper that the "weaker Russian economy is extremely unprofitable for Italy."

In other words, just as slowly, the world is starting to grasp the bottom line: it is not the financial exposure to Russia, or the threat of financial contagion should Russia suffer a major recession or worse: it is something far simpler that will lead to the biggest harm for Europe's countries. The lack of trade. Because while central banks can monetize everything, leading to an unprecedented asset bubble which if only for the time being boosts investor and consumer confidence, they can't print trade - that all important driver of growth in a globalized world long before central banks were set to monetize over $1 trillion in bonds each and every year to mask the fact that the world is deep in a global depression.
Which is why we read the following report written in yesterday's Deutsche Wirtschafts Nachrichten [13]with great interest because it goes right to the bottom line. In it Russia has a not so modest proposal to Europe: dump trade with the US, whose call for Russian "costs" has cost you another year of declining economic growth, and instead join the Eurasian Economic Union! From the source [14]:

Russia has presented a startling proposal to overcome the tensions with the EU: The EU should renounce the free trade agreement with the United States TTIP and enter into a partnership with the newly established Eurasian Economic Union instead. A free trade zone with the neighbors would make more sense than a deal with the US.

Vladimir Chizhov told EUobserver: “Our idea is to start official contacts between the EU and the EAEU as soon as possible. [German] chancellor Angela Merkel talked about this not long ago. The EU sanctions [on Russia] are not a hindrance”.

“I think that common sense advises us to explore the possibility of establishing a common economic space in the Eurasian region, including the focus countries of the Eastern Partnership [an EU policy on closer ties with Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, and Ukraine]".

He described the new Russia-led bloc as a better partner for the EU than the US, with a dig at health standards in the US food industry.

And as a reminder [15]: The Eurasian Economic Union, a trade bloc of former Soviet states, expanded to four nations Friday when Armenia formally joined, a day after the union between Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan began.

So the ball is in your court, Europe: will it be a triple-dip (and soon thereafter quadruple: see Japan) recession as your Goldman-controlled central bank plunders ever more of what little is left of middle-class wealth with promises that this year - for real - is when it all turns around, or will Europe acknowledge it has had enough and shifts its strategic, and trade, focus from west (speaking of the TTIP, Germany's agriculture minister just said "We can't protect every sausage [17]" referring to the TTIP) to east?
Considering just whose interests are represented by the unelected bureaucrats in Brussels, we won't be holding our breath.

The strengthening of Russia's nuclear triad will be the top priority for the Russian Armed Forces next year, Chief of the General Staff, Gen. Valery Gerasimov, said on Monday.
"The readiness and development of strategic nuclear forces will be the main priority," Gerasimov said in an interview with the Rossiya-24 television.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said on December 19 that the Russian strategic nuclear forces will receive more than 50 ICBMs in 2015. Putin also reaffirmed plans to modernize the fleet of Russian strategic bombers and nuclear-powered submarines.
According to the new Russian military doctrine signed by Putin Friday, Moscow reserves the right to use nuclear weapons in response to the use of nuclear weapons or any other types of weapons of mass destruction against Russia or its allies, as well as in the case of an attack with conventional weaponry that threatens the very existence of the state.

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