Sunday, August 30, 2015

NATO's Strategy Towards Russia 'Extremely Dangerous', Is Europe Being Marginalized By Russia?


The North Atlantic Alliance could have well been inspired by the words of House Lannister in its policy with regard to Russia. The bloc's recent moves, including Washington's F-22 deployment to Germany, are an apparent show of strength, a German political analyst asserted, calling this strategy "extremely dangerous."

It has not always been this way. NATO's strategy during the Cold War was "wiser," Horst Teltschik noted.
These days NATO is apparently all about confrontation, not dialogue with Moscow. The North Atlantic Alliance is currently engaged in the largest airborne war-games since the end of the Cold War. The bloc has recently decided to open additional command centers in the Eastern European countries and the Baltics. Earlier, in June, the US elected to preposition heavy military hardware close to Russia's borders.

These other steps contributed to the lack of trust between the two parties, according to the expert. Moreover, NATO's saber rattling, which Russia perceives as dangerous to the European security, forced Moscow to bolster its defense capabilities.

"These moves should be viewed as mutual threats. Russia is trying to intimidate NATO and vice versa," Focus magazine quoted the former national security advisor to Chancellor Helmut Kohl as saying. NATO has always been engaged in these activities, he added.

"I think this is a huge mistake," Teltschik asserted referring to NATO's stance on Russia. "Only dialogue [with Moscow] can prevent confrontation."

Although the situation appears to be grim at the moment, there is a silver lining. The war between the two parties is "impossible" since neither want the conflict to take place, the expert is convinced. Moreover, the tensions could ease in the foreseeable future, he added.
Teltschik views NATO's decision to scale back its Baltic air mission from 16 to eight aircraft as a positive sign. This is "a step in the right direction," just like the reestablishment of a direct line to Russia's military, he noted.

France should put itself at the forefront of an effort to forge a close alliance between an independent EU and the BRICS nations, above all Russia and China, the French ex-Premier wrote on Friday.

Feeling alienated by the growing wave of western criticism and sanctions, Russia is turning towards China.

And with pretty good reason too, as the two nations are equally wary of US pressure and have shared interests in energy, security investments and a wealth of other economic cooperation projects.

And, while the US is trying to isolate Russia for its alleged role in the Ukrainian conflict, Moscow is using its leading role in the five-nation BRICS group to even the score, Jean-Pierre Raffarin wrote in Friday’s issue of Le Huffington Post.
Meanwhile, Washington’s current pivot to Asia and the Pacific is seen by Beijing as a worrying development, just as America’s active fence-mending with Iran is by Moscow.
“And all this is happening at a time when the growing instability in the world and the ongoing war with terrorism call for a closer partnership between the great powers,” the author added.
What Russia and China now need is a strong “European” Europe. Beijing’s financial policy is aimed at preventing the collapse of the Eurozone and Russia apparently wants to deal with a Europe less dependent on Washington.

Russia’s positions in the Middle East have always been strong and Paris and Moscow have a lot of shared interests in Iran. As regards to China, France should embrace its proposed partnership in the Third World.

The China-US-Russia triangle could become a triangle of prosperity as each country has impressive human, natural and financial resources as well as a strong need for new jobs, greater affluence and stability.

The speed of the ongoing rapprochement between Russia and China directly depends on how politically independent the EU countries really are and the leading role France needs to play here. Civil society should have a greater say in the process of political decision-making.

Suppose masters of surveillance know exactly what emails have been scrubbed from Hillary Clinton’s private server? Suppose they’ve had a complete collection of all her emails all along?

Suppose masters of surveillance have an enormous database of emails and phone calls from every current presidential candidate and his/her staff?

Suppose the actual details of Benghazi, Fast&Furious, the IRS-Tea Party scandal, and numerous other events are in the hands of these surveillance masters?

Suppose the secret negotiations surrounding several trade treaties, including the TPP, are known, in great detail, by the masters of surveillance?

Suppose this is not science fiction.

Suppose some of this information can (or has been) turned into blackmail operations; or conversely, has been concealed to protect the guilty?

Suppose, for example, the hundreds of millions of emails and phone calls generated within the European Union bureaucracy are in the hands of these surveillance masters.

The old saw, “Information is power,” takes on new meaning.

So does, “We’re not in Kansas anymore.”

It’s an open secret that propaganda ops contain the component of analyzing the reactions of the population to the propaganda messages. That has been true for a very long time. But now, the ability to judge and parse those reactions is increased a thousand-fold, because of surveillance.

This is a new age.

The Surveillance State has created an apparatus whose implications are staggering. It’s a different world now. And sometimes it takes a writer of fiction to flesh out the larger landscape.

We think about total surveillance as being directed at private citizens, but the capability has unlimited payoffs when it targets financial markets and the people who have intimate knowledge of them.

“Total security awareness” programs of surveillance are ideal spying ops in the financial arena, designed to suck up millions of bits of inside information, then utilizing them to make investments and suck up billions (trillions?) of dollars.

Taking the overall scheme to another level, consider this: those same heavy hitters who have unfettered access to financial information can also choose, at opportune moments, to expose certain scandals and crimes (not their own, of course).

In this way, they can, at their whim, cripple governments, banks, and corporations. They can cripple investment houses, insurance companies, and hedge funds. Or, alternatively, they can merely blackmail these organizations.

We think we know how scandals are exposed by the press, but actually we don’t. Tips are given to people who give them to other people. Usually, the first clue that starts the ball rolling comes from a source who remains in the shadows.

What we are talking about here is the creation and managing of realities on all sides, including the choice of when and where and how to provide a glimpse of a crime or scandal.

Have they discovered the truth about how close or how far away Iran is from producing a nuclear weapon?

Have they collected detailed accounts of the most private plans of Bilderberg, CFR, and Trilateral Commission leaders?

For global surveillance kings, what we think of as the future is, in many respects the present and the past.

It’s a new world. These overseers of universal information-detection can enter and probe the most secret caches of data, collect, collate, cross reference, and assemble them into vital bottom-lines. By comparison, an operation like Wikileaks is an old Model-T Ford puttering down a country road, and Julian Assange, reviled as a terrorist, is a mere piker.

Previously, we thought we needed to look over the shoulders of the men who were committing major crimes out of public view. But now, if we want to be up to date, we also have to factor in the men who are spying on those criminals, who are gathering up those secrets and using them to commit their own brand of meta-crime.

And in the financial arena, that means we think of Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan as perpetrators, yes, but we also think about the men who already know everything about GS and Morgan, and are using this knowledge to steal sums that might make GS and Morgan blush with envy.

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