There is an obvious link between Washington’s prompt global strike initiative, which seeks capability to engage “any targets anywhere in the world within one hour of the decision,” and the deployment of missile launch systems in Europe and aboard naval vessels across the globe, Lt. Gen. Viktor Poznikhir said at a news briefing on Wednesday.
“The presence of US missile defense bases in Europe, missile defense vessels in seas and oceans close to Russia creates a powerful covert strike component for conducting a sudden nuclear missile strike against the Russian Federation,” Poznikhir explained.
While the US keeps claiming that its missile defenses are seeking to mitigate threats from rogue states, the results of computer simulations confirm that the Pentagon’s installations are directed against Russia and China, according to Poznikhir.
American missile attack warning systems, he said, cover all possible trajectories of Russian ballistic missiles flying toward the United States, and are only expected to get more advanced as new low-orbit satellites complement the existing radar systems.
“Applying sudden disarming strikes targeting Russian or Chinese strategic nuclear forces significantly increases the efficiency of the US missile defense system,” Poznikhir added.
American ABM systems are not only creating an “illusion” of safety from a retaliatory strike but can themselves be used to launch a sneak nuclear attack on Russia.
In a blatant breach of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, the standard land-based launching systems can be covertly rearmed with Tomahawk cruise missiles instead of interceptors – and the Pentagon’s denial of this fact, according to Poznikhir, is “at the very least unconvincing.”
Moreover, Washington’s unilateral withdrawal from the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty, signed in 1972 with the Soviet Union, allowed it to develop more advanced weapons that can now not only pose a threat to targets on the ground but in space as well.
“In February 2008, the Pentagon demonstrated the possibility of engaging spacecraft with its ABM capabilities,” Poznikhir said. “An American satellite at an altitude of about 250 km was destroyed by a Standard-3 missile, an earlier modification, launched from a US Navy destroyer.”
“Given the global nature of the ABM ships’ deployment, the space operations of any state, including the Russian Federation and the People’s Republic of China, are under threat.”
Russia has repeatedly voiced its concerns over the risk American ABM systems pose to the global balance of power and thus peace and stability, but has consistently been sidelined.
“Within the framework of cooperation, we also proposed jointly to develop a missile defense architecture for Europe, which could guarantee security against the impacts of nonstrategic ballistic missiles,” said Poznikhir.
“However, all Russian initiatives were rejected.”
“In this regard, Russia is compelled to take measures aimed at maintaining the balance of strategic arms and minimizing the possible damage to national security as a result of the United States’ ABM systems expansion.”
“This will not make the world a safer place,” he warned, urging Washington to engage in a constructive dialogue instead of dully repeating that the systems are not aimed at undermining Russia’s or China’s national security.
‘He is a hypocrite!’ France’s Macron heckled by pro-Le Pen workers in his hometown (VIDEO)
Wednesday’s collision happened outside the Whirlpool tumble dryer factory that employs some 300 workers in Macron’s home city of Amiens. Le Pen made a surprise visit to the plant as Macron was meeting with union representatives in the Chamber of Commerce.
Hijacking the moment by showing up unannounced, Le Pen vowed to keep the factory open, despite Whirlpool’s decision to outsource the labor to Poland.
“When I heard that Emmanuel Macron was coming here and did not plan to meet the workers, did not plan to come to the picket line but would shelter himself who knows where in the chamber of commerce… I considered it was such a sign of contempt for the Whirlpool workers that I decided to… come here and see you,” Le Pen told the cheering workers, according to DW.
“Everyone knows what side Emmanuel Macron is on – he is on the side of the corporations. I am on the workers’ side, here in the car park, not in restaurants in Amiens,” she said, to the chorus of applause. “He’s (Macron) showing disdain for workers, so I’ve come to see them.”
Arriving later at the factory gates to a crowd of employees who chanted “Marine President,” Macron found himself amid a chaotic scene. The 39-year-old presidential candidate for En Marche! spent over an hour trying to persuade the workers to listen to him, telling them that the only reason that Le Pen paid them a visit was because he was there.
Macron, who is seen to represent big business, attracts the well-educated and well-employed electorate. Just days before the second round of elections on May 7, he is seen as trying to make a last ditch effort to appeal to the working-class voters who are struggling with mass unemployment and tend to lean toward the far-right National Front.
“I am here to speak to you,” Macron tried to tell the crowd as they whistled and booed the former Economy Minister. “Of course there is anger in this country, there is anxiety. Responsibility must be taken, that’s why I’m here.”
“When she tells you the solution is to turn back globalization, she’s lying,” Macron told the workers. “We cannot outlaw firing. We must fight to find a buyer.”
Macron also tried to assure the workers that Le Pen’s proposals of “stopping globalization and closing borders” are not the solution.
Earlier this year, US multinational giant, Whirlpool announced plans to stop manufacturing dryers in its plant in Amiens on June 1, 2018. The production will be relocated to Poland, as part of restructuring its European operations.
However in practice, workers believe, Whirlpool just wants to save on operational costs as the minimum wage in Poland is 431 euros against the 1,480 euros in France.
“We waited for him to make him understand that we don’t agree with everything he does… We want to make him understand that he is a hypocrite,” Chantalle Flahaut, a Whirlpool factory employee told RT’s Ruptly.
“I am sorry but he is a hypocrite. He is a hypocrite. The government has to stop giving money to the rich. It has to stop. The multinationals don’t bring work, they take it away,” he added.
Meanwhile, an RT crew, present at the rally, caught up with En Marche’s spokesperson to ask when RT will be accredited by Macron’s team. The day of the first round of elections, RT was denied access into Macron’s headquarters, despite earlier being promised accreditation by his team.
“Will you finally accept the accreditation request by RT?,” the RT correspondent asked. Twisting and turning the spokeswoman refused to comment, ditching the question. Seconds later she just walked away.
Following the unpleasant campaign day, Macron took to Twitter accusing Le Pen of running a populist based campaign.
“Marine Le Pen spends ten minutes with party members in front of cameras, while I spend an hour and a quarter working with the unions, with no press. Everyone will make choice on May 7th,” he tweeted.
“We talked with the unions for more than an hour, while Marine Le Pen has been playing politics by haranguing political activists in a parking lot,” Macron also told Le Parisien newspaper.
Macron won the first round of the presidential race on Sunday by securing 24.1 percent of the votes to Le Pen’s 21.3 percent.
As the candidates prepare to influence the electorate ahead of the May 7 second round vote, a survey by Harris Interactive released Wednesday, showed that 61 percent of voters thought Le Pen had started the final stretch of campaigning well. According to Bloomberg, some 52 percent thought Macron had done badly in his second round campaigning thus far.
‘Like being accused of murder while victim is alive’: Orban fights accusations over Soros university
Orban appeared before the European Parliament on Wednesday to address critics who claim the new law tightens restrictions on foreign-backed institutions and is aimed at closing the Central European University (CEU) in Budapest which is bankrolled by Soros.
“This accusation is unfounded,” Orban said, as cited by Blikk. “The situation is like when someone is accused of murder and convicted of the murder while the victim is still alive, and pointing to the defendant.”
Orban did, however, accuse the CEU of “cheating” because it issued diplomas accepted both in the US and Hungary, giving it an unfair advantage. And although registered in New York, it has no campus there.
Orban also took the time to criticize both Soros and the EU, calling the billionaire a “financial speculator” and saying that he strongly disagreed with his promotion of a more open immigration policy.
“Because of him, millions have lost their money so that he can profit,” Orban alleged, adding that while Hungary’s commitment to the EU was “not questionable”, it was unhappy with the status quo and wanted “reform”.
But Orban’s words did not seem to sway the EU delegates, as European Commission President Valdis Dombrovskis announced that the EU had sent a “letter of formal notice” to the Hungarian government.
The Commission believes the new law could impede European rights to academic freedom, education and the right to provide services. The Hungarian government has one month to respond before any more decisions are made.
CEU President Michael Ignatieff said he hopes the motion “will lead the Hungarian government toward rapid negotiations so that we can resolve this matter,” Associated Press reported.
The new bill, which was approved by the Hungarian parliament earlier this month, sparked widespread protests by students and CEU supporters in Budapest.
Orban has made no secret of his distaste for George Soros and his political activities, accusing him of undermining European borders and values by helping facilitate the flow of refugees and asylum seekers from the Middle East and elsewhere.
George Soros and Viktor Orbán go to war in Budapest (Op-Edge) https://on.rt.com/88bq
George Soros and Viktor Orbán go to war in Budapest — RT Op-Edge
Hungary’s pressure on George Soros’ Budapest university is about more than the future of one school. It’s part of an ideological battle which will dominate European and North American discourse in…
“His name is perhaps the strongest example of those who support anything that weakens nation states, they support everything that changes the traditional European lifestyle,” Orban said in a 2015 interview on public radio Kossuth, as cited by Bloomberg. “These activists who support immigrants inadvertently become part of this international human-smuggling network.”
Orban himself received a grant from one of Soros’ foundations to study politics at Oxford University’s Pembroke College in 1989, which he has since pledged to repay.