Sunday, 25 May 2014

News round-up

RT advertises itself as reporting the news that matters. On many levels (with some notable exceptions, such as human-indiced climate change) this is justified as the western corporate media tells lies about the conflict in the Ukraine and is silent about issues ranging from energy decline in Britain and France to protests against GE and Monsanto.

Here is my own summing up of the headlines based on watching RT this morning.

Looking at the headlines


Listening to the news program on RT gave me an idea of a new way to cover some of the most important news:


First, the Ukraine:

Ukraine is building up to a presidential vote while violence continues to escalate in the Slavyansk and Donetsk regionss. 3 foreign journalists have been killed, presumably in crossfire while the news is coming through the wires that the 3 Russian journalists being “investigated for terrorism” have been released and flown back to Moscow


Accroding to RT these are the most important contenders:


  • Dmitro Yarosh – Right Sector (Right Sector), (neo nazi and anti-oligarch)
  • Oleg Tyangnibok – neo-fascist “Svoboda Party', anti-semite
  • Yulia Tymoshenko – corrupt oligarch and ultra-nationalist who wants to 'nuke Russia' and  supports accession to the EU,
  • Pyotr Poroshenko- 'the chocolate king', the oligarch favoured by the West, favouring 'economic integration' - most likely, given outside interference, to win.

What stopped me in my tracks was an interview with Theodore Karasik from
the UN Sec General's office who said that the situation in Ukraine is complicated and is starting, in the long-term to resemble Syria; is mult-dimensional and complicated, with numerous groups fighting for power. He referred to the 'fascist question' and stated it was a mistake for Obama to 'support these groups'.


Global March: Protests around 

world against Monsanto




Meanwhile there are protests all around the world against genetic engineering and corporate criminal, Monsanto.

No doubt these will go unreported by the corporate media.

RT reports that whole range of diseases – hepatic, renal, pancreatic and reproductive, such as:

  • immune system alternations
  • cancer risk
  • allergies
  • childhood learning difficulties,

while toxins that help to grow the crops have been found in the urine of pregnant women.

All of this was accurately predicted back at the end of the 90's when I was researching this subject for a submission to a Royal Commission in NZ that ignored all the evidence and essentially embraced GE and recommended to 'make progress carefully'

Essentially the GE genie is out of the bottle; voices of reason were ignored and we will have to live with the consequences.





Running Dry: UK fossil fuel reserves to end in 5yrs



RT talks of a report in Britain from the Sustainability ... that states that Britain only has 2-3 years of oil and gas reserves left - and that is only if Scotland doesn't vote for independence and take North Sea Oil with it.

The RT piece says that Middle Eastern countries have hundreds of years of oil left, while Russia has one hundred years of gas.



It has to be constantly pointed out that reserves are meaningless - it is the reserves of easily- available oil and gas that is important ('the low-hanging fruit'). Once production has peaked it becomes more and more expensive and less economic to produce and as my friend Rice Farmer pointed out "there's no telling when a resource that is economic today will suddenly become uneconomic"

In any case, Britain, France and other west European countries are already basket- cases and even seem to determined (through their polices toward Russia and the Ukraine) not to see gas supplies continue from Russia.

Their nazi friends in the Ukraine will see to that, possibly by blowing up pipelines as the civil war they fomented in their backyard intensifies.

Meanwhile Britain insists on shooting itself in the foot in another area - 


Putin: Prince Charles' Hitler remark unacceptable, unroyal behavior


From the sublime to the ridiculous - Prince Charles has been playing 'foot-in-mouth' by referring to Vladimir Putin as "Hitler' ignoring his family's very real ties to the actual Adolf Hitler.  I have studiously ignore this - but here is Putin's response.

BBC version HERE




Credit Upgrade? Austerity-stricken Greece still struggling



Greece has disappeared off the radar for most of us as the situation everywhere else deteriorates. 

We are told that Greece is due for a credit upgrade, but this report from RT shows how ordinary Greeks are continuing to struggle.

Well done, RT, for keeping this in the public eye.

With a recent credit upgrade there seems to be light at the end of the tunnel for the struggling Greek economy. But so far there's little change for the austerity-stricken Greek people. Unemployment remains the highest in Europe, with more than half the country's youth out of work. Some are now fleeing the cities in search of a better life - only to discover things aren't any brighter in the countryside, as Marina Kosareva reports. 





Economic Forum in St Persburg

Meanwhile Russia, on the heals of its landmark gas deal with China is justifiably feeling pretty optimistic as American and EU-led sanctions against Russia start to backfire and even present some opportunites.

The greatest opportunity is that Russia starts to look eastwards and undermines the dominance of the 'almighty dollar' in its trading relations with China - and then India, Iran and other countries.  The Europeans might even come knocking at the door as they realise what they have lost





Putin: Isolating Russia is not possible



Meanwhile a confident Vladimir Putin has given a press conference in his own St. Petersburg - 






Putin: We object to certain countries twisting intl law to justify

actions





Meanwhile here is some other news off the RT newswire


20:16
Pentagon cancels drills, visits following Thailand coup


The US Pentagon has called off its ongoing military exercises and scheduled official visits after the Thai army seized power in a military coup on Thursday. “While we have enjoyed a long and productive military-to-military relationship with Thailand, our own democratic principles and U.S. law require us to reconsider U.S. military assistance and engagements,” spokesman Rear Admiral John Kirby said in a statement, reported AFP. Thursday’s coup, which took place after several months of political turmoil, has sparked international concern over the country’s domestic politics. “We will continue to review additional engagements as necessary until such time that events in Thailand no longer demand it,” Kirby said.

19:26
French forces and rebels clash in Central African Republic


French troops have clashed with former Central African Republic (CAR) rebels according to a military spokesperson, Gilles Jaron, reported AFP. Some 20 CAR gunmen unleashed fire on French troops who retaliated. While a vehicle was destroyed, nobody was killed in the incident. It is not yet clear whether there have been other injuries. CAR has been crisis-swept since March last year when the predominantly Muslim Seleka alliance led by Michel Djotodia took power. Seleka rebels later started seeking revenge.




18:26
Three people killed in Thailand explosions


At least three people have been killed and 55 injured in a series of bombings which took place in Thailand’s south. Islamic insurgent activity has permeated the area for more than 10 years. “Explosions killed three and injured 55 people. Of those, five people were seriously injured…the explosions occurred in busy areas as people were shopping ahead of curfew,” Southern region military spokesman Colonel Piamote Prom-In told Thai television on Saturday, referring to a 10pm curfew imposed since a military coup on Thursday. In addition to the spate of attacks spanning Pattani, Yala, and Narathiwat, provinces, some gunfire was also heard.

13:09
‘Russia sure of Syrian election’s legitimacy’ – Deputy PM Rogozin

Moscow has no doubts about the legitimacy of the upcoming presidential election in Syria, scheduled for June 3, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin said after a meeting with Syrian President Bashar Assad in Damascus. The vote will be staged “in accordance with the basic law of the Syrian Arab Republic and on due date,” Rogozin is cited by RIA Novosti. The deputy PM stressed that the presence of “a legitimate president” will have a positive impact on the peace process in the country torn by civil war since 2011. Rogozin also condemned the “policy of controlled chaos,” which the West implements in Syria in order to satisfy its geopolitical needs.



11:39
Iran hangs businessman over $2.6 bn banking scam

Mahafarid Amir Khosravi, the billionaire Iranian businessman convicted of orchestrating a $2.6bn (£1.5bn) banking scheme, has reportedly been hanged in Tehran's Evin prison. Khosravi was sentenced to death after being convicted of "corruption...through bribery and money laundering," a justice department statement aired by Iranian media said. Khosravi's lawyer, Gholam Ali Riahi, was quoted by news website khabaronline.ir as saying his client was put to death without prior notification. "I had not been informed about execution of my client," Riahi said. "All the assets of my client are at the disposal of the prosecutor's office." The scandal broke in 2011 when prosecutors said they discovered a private umbrella group, led by Amir Khosravi, and his brothers, unlawfully collecting billions of dollars.



09:04
Earthquake rattles buildings in Mexico City



A magnitude 5.4 earthquake hit northwest of Oaxaca, Mexico, early on Saturday, at a depth of 38km, according to the US Geological Survey, Reuters reported. The USGS initially reported the quake, at 0824 GMT, at magnitude 5.7. The quake was felt in the capital, Mexico City, 330km (200 miles) to the northwest, a Reuters witness said. No injuries have been reported.

01:36
US suspends some aid to Thailand following military coup




The US suspended $3.5 million worth of military aid to Thailand in light of the country’s coup, carried out by its armed forces, reports the BBC. The move to suspend aid seemed to be a measured response since the military took control of the country, and came as the Thai military placed former Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra under detention along with dozens of other politicians. The US State Department has urged tourists to cancel trips, and halted non-essential visits by government officials, urging Thailand’s armed forces to restore civilian rule “immediately.” The US is reportedly still reviewing an additional $7 million in assistance to Thailand.

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