What A Shit Year This Has Been

But it has nothing on what is in store for the world in 2020.

Here’s hoping to get through it.

"You wouldn't want to be an American in Iraq just now"

“After U.S. Strike On Iraqi Forces Its Troops Will (Again) Have To Leave”

I tagged this onto the end of a previous post today but it is fully deserving of a post of its own.

I am now officially disgusted with the US.  They don’t deserve to breathe the same air that everyone else does.  In fact someone should nuke the bastards.

Having got that off my chest I will settle for them being thrown out of Iraq and therefore also Syria.  This is now, as MOA suggests ‘inevitable’.  As are more attacks on US bases there: “Revenge attacks are now inevitable”.

“AMERICAN STRIKES IN IRAQ HAVE JUST MADE A BAD SITUATION MUCH WORSE” – 1001 IRAQI THOUGHTS

You wouldn’t want to be an American in Iraq just now.

2019 goes out with a BANG! What a great start to 2020.

Getting Along Together…

“Contract on Russian gas transit via Ukraine stipulates ‘pump or pay’ principle – Naftogaz”

See?  It’s not all that difficult to get along together, is it, when issues are put aside or amicably settled for mutual benefit? 

Much better than shooting at each other.

The world should operate more on these principles. 

“Starting tomorrow maybe?” says he, perhaps a little too starry-eyed.

2011 Repeat? That Would Be Nice.

Wow! Australia’s Stan Grant hosting news bulletins on al Jazeera! That’s something I wasn’t aware of – but not what I’m sharing this for.

The US has attacked militia units associated with an ally. That’s pretty newsworthy and, being already on the nose in Iraq, it wouldn’t take much of such action – this may even probably be sufficient – to get them (the US) unceremoniously thrown out of Iraq by angry mobs, as also occurred in 2011 – though you won’t find many Americans admitting to that.

The Shia militia group they attacked is part of the Iraqi PMUs, supposedly integrated into the Iraqi military forces and under the direct command of the Iraqi Prime Minister. You can’t fight a whole angry country – and Iraq can call on a great many friends for support.

I’m looking forward to the repercussions of this act. It may be a great curtain opener for 2020. Then, looking further ahead, with US out of Iraq, US presence in Syria would have no direct supply lines. How sweet it is to think such thoughts? …and hope they become reality.

Added later: …and I swear I had not seen this MOA article before writing the above –

“After U.S. Strike On Iraqi Forces Its Troops Will (Again) Have To Leave”

…and another thought.  The groups the US attacked were about to launch an attack on ISIS remnants at al Qaem.  Another confirmation that the US is working in cahoots with (and protective of) ISIS.  Bastards all.

Prisoner Swap …and then what?

So the prisoner swap between the Kiev government and the DPR/LPR republics of Donbass, the only thing of any value that has so far and probably ever will come of the Normandy Four meetings, has taken place yesterday 29 Dec 2019.  A total of 124 people to Donbass and 74 to Kiev, were swapped.

“Decision to hand over former Berkut officers to Donbass was “political” — Zelensky”

A number of those released by Kiev were former Berkut riot police arrested in 2014 following the Maidan uprising. Remember at the time, this was the government of the former Russian leaning president Yanukovich, and the riot police were said to be hard on the protesting nationalists (aka nazis), and accused of shooting many of the protesters. That was not the case of course, and they have never actually been tried in court. The snipers involved in the shootings, it is now known, were actually CIA thugs (which I have reported elsewhere) paid to raise the riots to a new level of violence and paving the way for the toppling of the government and the installation of a new US puppet government in Ukraine. That is now all part of history, which the US, however much it is denied, will never be forgiven for staging. 

You can read some of that story here: “Kiev court rules to release former Berkut riot police officers on own recognizance” 

So, these ex-police were actually the ‘good guys’ (if riot police can ever be thought of as such), enforcing the law, not killers, and over a thousand of them were wounded in that US sponsored unrest.  Some of them, recognising they were now marked men, wisely fled to Russia where they are serving the community as members of the Russian police force and ironically needing to deal with similar CIA inspired unrest there.

“Russia: Berkut officers join Russian law enforcement units” 

…while those who remained in Ukraine have been treated badly and made examples of in that now overtly nationalistic nation:

“Ukraine ‘Berkut’ Anti-Riot Police Pray For Forgiveness”

So, that is over now. The decks are supposedly clear. So now, what? I am not sure where else this process has to go. Some trumped up agreement to pursue a dead-end agenda, half-heartedly signed by both sides and a few disinterested onlookers? Maybe. It could also, more honestly, simply collapse through lack of interest by the main participants – all of whom are, or were, part of a previous version of Ukraine – now a three way split. Somehow they have all got to deal with that.

Comparative Analytics…

Take a look at this Syrian town in Idlib province, recently liberated from terrorism by Syria’s army, the SAA. Yes there is damage there, inevitable in warfare (and through years of terrorist occupation), but compare that to how Raqqa looked (and still looks 2 years later) after the US coalition had finished with it.

“Strategic town of Jarjnaz in Idleb southeastern countryside after liberating it from terrorism”

Syrian forces and their Russian partners take care not to damage their communities more than necessary to root out terrorism. You would of course have a different picture if you only read Western media reports or listen to the shrill bleatings of the terrorist hordes complaining of bombings and civilian deaths and dispersals resulting from them. But, in truth, the best care is taken by Syrian and Russian air units not to damage property or inflict injury on civilian areas, targeting only the hideouts and bunkers of the terrorists themselves wherever possible. This is obvious if you make the comparisons I have suggested above.

So who now tells the right story? Who should you believe? I think you can make a good judgement on that.

Yes, the terrorists are dying in large numbers. Yes, their families are in danger and are being displaced from homes they have purloined for too long. Yes, many of them will also die. Such is fitting and necessary to rid Syria of the trash that has invaded it for so long, both local and mainly from other trash sites around the world. Good riddance to them. May they find no place to rest. May no place be a place of safety for them. And may all the doubters and bleeding hearts in the West be silenced.

When It's Time…

One of the many songs I love, songs that tend to evoke (changed this from ‘invoke’ which carries meaning I did not intend) some emotional response whenever heard, is Andrea Bocelli’s ‘Time To Say Goodbye’, or ‘Con Te Partiro’ (I Will Go With You) as it was originally called. Sometimes it is more meaningful, especially in modern times (when lyrics are mostly meaningless), to not know what the song is all about. Especially when recorded in an unfamiliar language, or even a familiar one with slurred, mispronounced or indecipherable words. The ‘not knowing’ allows or concentrates the human response to focus more strongly on what the music brings (as music is intended to do), with perhaps only passing reference to the words themselves. Such is the case with this song.

The English title was a marketing ploy which brought the song its ultimate success and popularity. But the original Italian words of the lyrics, it has been claimed, do not translate well into English, becoming somewhat meaningless, as the direct translation* below seems to indicate – though no less meaningful I would suggest than many modern songs originally penned in English.

* Translated using ‘Translator’ by SailorMax – a useful and very flexible tool for Mozilla and Opera browsers (possibly others) that I use frequently as a browser extension on my desktop.

‘Time To Say Goodbye’

When I am alone
Dream on the horizon
And the words are missing
Yes I know there is no light
In a room when the sun is out
If you’re not with me, with me
On the windows
Show everyone my heart
That you turned on
Close inside me
The light that
You met on the street

Time to say goodbye
Countries that I never
Saw and shared with you
Now I will live them
I’ll go with you
On ships over seas
That I know it
No no they do not exist anymore
It’s time to say goodbye

Sarah Brightman, who masterfully joins in duet with Andrea Bocelli on versions of the song you may have heard (a fairly youthful Ms Brightman here), has her own English version which is close to the translation above, and I defy anyone to declare that performance as being meaningless. And yet… even so, the meaning remains a little obscure.

Sarah Brightman ~ Time To Say Goodbye With Lyrics

I have put together a much reduced version of the lyrics, not meant to rhyme, which I think expresses more succinctly the essence of the ideas captured by the song.

‘I Will Go With You’

I dream alone, with wordless dreams,
In the darkness, without you.
You opened the windows of my heart
Revealing the light you kindled in my darkness.

Time to say goodbye.

To the places we never shared, I’ll go with you.
Ready now to live those dreams,
Wherever they may take us.
I know this is no longer possible.

It’s time to say goodbye.

A song of regrets and missed opportunities, now unrecoverable with the passage of time.  And yet that is not exactly what the music says.  It speaks of rekindled hope and anticipated fulfilment.  Were it not for that single line “I know this is no longer possible” or “No no they do not exist anymore”, that is the message we would be receiving.  But, of course, that, as I’m sure many of us will have discovered, is not the real world in which we live.  A world in which time passes and opportunities, once missed, are seldom presented again. A world in which darkness of some sort often obscures what in other light we may have readily grasped with both hands.  A world in which a time inevitably arrives when, like it or not, or ready or not, forewarned or not, we have to say goodbye to the things we hold most dear.  Better then to fearlessly take what opportunities come our way when first they present themselves – and not live, for however long, with regrets over not having done so. 

To hope, and to chances, and to readiness to take them.  And a little good music to uplift our spirits on the way – perhaps coming from a direction we may not have anticipated.  Delightful.

US, Oil Thieves

The US, through its continued presence in Syria is stealing $30 million a month in oil revenue from the Syrian government. This is how the US ‘secretly’ funds its military adventures.

Syrian Oil And US Troop Withdrawal, Explained: – SouthFront

In what universe can this be said to be a fair and just situation? There is an increasingly well known saying – “With the US, it’s always about the oil”.

The US, by its actions, continues to be the enemy of all independent sovereign nations in the world.

A Little Can Go A Long Way …Even To The Top

When you climb to the top of the tree and from that height piss on all the neighbours, you had better damn well make sure you stay there at the top, no matter what it takes.

Take for example the US.  Do I need to explain further?

With nauseating arrogance, that is exactly what the US has done over the second half of that last century – well, up to and including the pissing on neighbours part, that is.  Then they sat back and thought “Ok we’re here now.  Top of the tree.  Nobody is going to catch up with us.  Heck, we’ve got the biggest and baddest military in the world.  And our nearest enemy, Russia, is on the ropes and ready for the knockout punch.  Sit back and relax for a bit.  Dust off the laurels once in a while.  Oh, and keep up the pissing, so folks know who is boss.”

How wrong they were.  How arrogantly foolish.

In the last 20-30 years Russia has gotten itself off the ropes and by hard work and clear thinking (not to mention exquisite leadership) has turned things around economically, and on a budget that represents the smell of an oily rag in comparison to that of the US, has engineered itself to the top of a higher tree than the US in terms of military readiness and weapons capability.  In an unprecedented turnover of situations they have overtaken the US by a country mile.  What more is certain, is that they will never again allow the US to dominate the world as they have been accustomed to doing.

“Russia’s new Avangard missile is a nuke-ready hypersonic glide weapon, the Kremlin says” – Australia ABC News

I know I reported this in another post recently but this share is an Australian ABC report on the matter.  It is mostly a reasonable assessment if you ignore the expected Western media doubting of Russian claims (Russia has no reason to make false statements on its newest capabilities and it is foolish to assume they are doing so).  Even Pentagon sources admit their own current dilemma.   

Let’s just take this a little further.  The US has raised its military spending (already the highest in the world by far) for 2020 to some $989 billion (taking into account hidden spending), an amount that is equivalent to the military budgets of all other nations that have such a thing (about 21 countries don’t have a military) combined.  See: “US Military Budget, Its Components, Challenges, and Growth” – The Balance

As much as everyone else combined, huh?  I wonder how the millions of poor and struggling Americans feel about that?  I also wonder if that amount will ever get to be delivered giving what is currently at stake for the US economy in 2020?

Russia, meanwhile has dropped out of the top 5 spending nations next year with a $US equivalent of $47.55 billion, according to this recent report from Jane’s: “Russia sketches out spending plans for 2020–22” While that may represent an actual drop, it is I think, mostly due to continuing US efforts to undermine the Rouble against the US dollar through unjustified and pernicious sanctions. Not only that but also by soiling Russian prestige using bribes, threats, and other dubious efforts through governing bodies over which the US has more influence than should be permitted, to paint that nation as a sporting cheat.

How do they do it, the Russians, on such a small budget?  It is by any measure a remarkable achievement, and one of which they are justly proud.

Would you not think that a nation in America’s position would want to work its way into having friendly relations with such a successful nation?  A nation that is running rings around the US in many fields of endeavour, not just militarily, and at the same time making many friends with other nations rather than peeing on them from a great height.   

Of course you can’t do that if your only ambition in life is to be top dog.  It just won’t work. 


Scribbles On The Wall Of Time…

“Evidence of Absence”, whatever deep meaning that holds, is the title of James Howard Kunstler’s latest blog post.  Sometimes he chooses titles for his pieces that even more befuddle my already befuddled brain.  Nevertheless, the intention is clear, and a finer description of the state of the union that for the time being is America you would be hard pressed to find anywhere, as 2019 gurgles and whimpers its way down the plughole of time and one decade of decadence and destruction splutters to an end while another decade, of what sort we are yet to learn – though the writing I think is already being scribbled on the wall of future history – begins.

According to Jim, patience is required it seems, for things to play out, if they ever do.  Well, I for one want to see it all happen. And right quick.  The fate of the world, or at least a largish chunk of it, depends on how soon the US crumbles and fades into something a little more benign, ceasing to be the thorn in everybody’s side that it has been for a century now.

Maybe it won’t ever happen as it properly should, and I have factored that possibility into my thinking also, but something big is going down in the next 12 months, of that I am sure.  Something will break.  Something that will shatter the complacent world of corruption and inequity of 21st century humanity.  And since the US is still the most powerful economy (just) in the world (though akin to a leaky boat precariously floating on a sea of its own debt), it is likely to centre around that particular polarity and its impacts and relationships on and with the rest of the world.

I can’t see us needing to be patient for much longer.  What we will need to be, is ready.  Ready for disruptions to the norm, upheavals to our customs, alterations to our ways and changes to our patterns of life.

Flexibility.  Yes, I think that is a good word for what is needed to navigate our tomorrows.  For a world, happy enough or befuddled enough to cling to dream bubbles that are likely to be popped over the next little while, that does not augur well.