Bad publicity? Cohen? Russiagate? Many reasons Trump canceled Putin meeting, but Ukraine isn’t one

Bad publicity? Cohen? Russiagate? Many reasons Trump canceled Putin meeting, but Ukraine isn’t one
US President Donald Trump cited the recent incident in the Kerch Strait when canceling the meeting with Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin. Experts who spoke with RT doubt that this is the real reason behind the last-minute move.

Officially, Trump called off the meeting because “the ships and sailors have not been returned to Ukraine from Russia,” he tweeted on Thursday, referring to the three vessels seized by the Russian coast guard while attempting to pass from the Black Sea to the Sea of Azov through Russian waters.

“I think if it was the reason for the meeting being canceled it was a bad reason,” Dan Kovalik, professor of human rights at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law, told RT. “No matter how one views the Kerch strait situation and who was at fault there, I think it’s the very time to have a meeting between the US and Russia to try and sort that incident out, to try to deal again with all the tensions that are happening anywhere in Europe between Russia and NATO.”

ALSO ON RT.COMHow Trump was finally tripped by sabotage of every meeting with PutinKovalik also argued that Trump might be feeling pressured not to look like he’s “colluding” with Putin – a charge leveled by his Democrat critics even before he defeated Hillary Clinton in the 2016 US presidential election, and used since to challenge the legitimacy of his presidency.

“It is certainly to avoid bad publicity. As you’ve noted, last time he met with Putin somehow he was seen as a traitor. That’s how crazy things have gotten in this country,” he told RT.

US media reacted with outrage to the Trump-Putin meeting in Helsinki, Finland, in July, with more than one outlet and talking head calling his remarks at a press conference there “treasonous.” That’s because Trump did not bring up Russian “meddling” in the 2016 election, which has become an article of faith in the US despite no actual evidence of it ever being produced.

“I think it’s more than a headline diversion,” former US diplomat Jim Jatras, told RT, saying that it might be more related to the appearance of Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen in federal court and his guilty plea about discussing plans for a Trump Tower in Moscow that “all the anti-Trump people are chattering about today.”

“I think that’s the atmospheric reason why he feels he needs to cancel this meeting,” Jatras said.

Instead of being a statesman and starting a conversation with the leaders of Russia, India and China at the summit to resolve tensions from the Black Sea to the South China Sea, Trump is being dragged down by “these petty little political problems domestically here that are designed simply to undermine Trump’s presidency – and I’m sorry to say, he’s dancing like a monkey on a string,” Jatras said.

“I think he is afraid,” the former diplomat added.

 

© Reuters / Grigory Dukor

Journalist Neil Clark thinks the only surprise about the cancellation is that anybody is surprised by it.

“I think that Trump in many ways was damned if he did and damned if he didn’t,” Clark told RT, noting that Democrats who called for him to cancel the meeting are now saying he should still meet with Putin, if only to criticize him over Russia’s alleged misconduct. If Trump had gone ahead with the meeting, he would’ve been accused of “appeasing Russian aggression” just like after Helsinki, Clark said.

ALSO ON RT.COMTrump cancels planned meeting with Putin at G20 over Russia-Ukraine flare upThere is a general atmosphere in Washington, the “mood music” pushing Trump to take a hard line towards Russia, and he is going along with it, Clark explained. He was also skeptical that the current US-Russia tensions could have been resolved in an hour-long meeting.

“There are forces at play here,” Clark told RT. “We’ve got the military-industrial complex, we’ve got the neocon think tanks, we’ve got the US energy industry, which is very keen to push Russia out of the European energy market.”

 

Reuters / Grigory Dukor

He also said he could see how Ukraine could have staged the Kerch Strait incident in order to sabotage the meeting, fearing that Trump and Putin might actually get along and eliminate some tensions between Washington and Moscow.

“There’s a lot of people out there who don’t want that to happen,” Clark said. “They really don’t want Russia and the US to have better relations

Like this story? Share it with a friend!


Ron Paul: Allow Americans to ‘Opt Out’ of Abortion and War

It may be impossible to find a welfare-warfare state program that does not offend someone’s moral or religious beliefs.

Ron Paul

Published  

on  

By  

179 Views

Authored by Ron Paul via The Ron Paul Institute for Peace & Prosperity:


The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recently released proposed rules allowing individuals to opt out of Obamacare’s abortion and contraception mandates for moral or religious reasons. These new rules should be cheered by all who agree with Thomas Jefferson that forcing people to subsidize that which they find abhorrent is “sinful and tyrannical.”

Sadly, Congress continues to pass, and President Trump continues to sign, spending bills subsidizing abortion providers. When government gives taxpayer money to abortion providers, it forces anti-abortion taxpayers to fund something they believe is murder. This is every bit as “sinful and tyrannical” as forcing health plans to pay for abortion and contraception.

If Congress is going to continue giving taxpayer dollars to abortion providers, then it should at least find a way to protect those with moral or religious objections to abortion from subsidizing the practice with their tax dollars. Creating a special fund for the taxes of those who object to abortion and ensuring money in that fund is not used to subsidize abortion providers would help ensure that anti-abortion taxpayers are no longer directly subsidizing what they believe is the murder of unborn children. However, it would force pro-life taxpayers to indirectly subsidize abortion because money is fungible. So, if the government used money from the pro-life taxpayers to increase spending on programs that do not subsidize abortion, it would be able to use a greater percentage of the taxes collected from other taxpayers to fund abortionists.

A better way to protect anti-abortion taxpayers is to give them an expanded charitable tax credit. Pro-life taxpayers could use the credit to support crisis pregnancy centers and other charities that help pregnant women and new mothers. This approach would increase funding to private charities, while ensuring that, since the plan reduces government revenue, anti-abortion taxpayers are neither directly nor indirectly subsidizing abortions.

Opponents of abortion are not the only Americans who should be allowed to opt out of paying for what they consider murder. The many Americans with moral and religious objections to Washington’s militaristic foreign policy should also be able to redirect some of their taxes from the warfare state to private charities. Some may claim this would weaken America’s defenses. However, since America’s military budget is higher than the combined military budgets of the next seven biggest spending countries, and since our militaristic foreign policy has little or no relation to actual security, there is no reason the military budget cannot and should not be reduced.

Allowing taxpayers to opt out of subsidizing war and abortion would be major victories. However, there are other government programs that might offer exemptions for moral or religious objections. For example, followers of Ayn Rand have moral objections to government-funded welfare. Some Christians also find government-provided welfare morally objectionable because they believe it is the duty of the church, not the state, to help the less fortunate. Others may find corporate welfare, the drug war, or restrictions on the First and Second Amendments morally objectionable.

It may be impossible to find a welfare-warfare state program that does not offend someone’s moral or religious beliefs. For many the entire welfare-warfare state is immoral because it is built on a foundation of aggression. The only way to stop the government forcing taxpayers to subsidize activities they consider immoral is to return to limited, constitutional government that does not steal from the people via the income tax and the inflation tax.


Israel denies its jet or any other ‘airborne target’ was downed during Syria raid

Israel denies its jet or any other 'airborne target' was downed during Syria raid
The Israeli military has described reports that one of its jets was brought down while carrying out airstrikes in Syria as “bogus,” amid reports that the country’s air defense systems engaged and downed several “hostile targets”.

Israeli Defense Forces have refused to comment on the country’s alleged role in the attack, with a spokesperson saying that they’re not commenting on reports in foreign media. Yet the IDF has denied a particular report that it had lost a warplane during the raid on Syria.

Israel Defense Forces

@IDF

During a Syrian surface-to-air missile launching, one launch was identified towards an open area in the Golan Heights. At this point, it remains unclear if the launch indeed landed in Israeli territory. IDF troops are searching the area.

Israel Defense Forces

@IDF

Reports regarding an IDF aircraft or an airborne IDF target having been hit are false.

A Syrian security source earlier told RIA Novosti that an Israeli jet was among the targets downed by the air defense. “Our air defense have downed an Israeli jet and four rockets before they could reach their targets,” the source said.

ALSO ON RT.COMSyrian air defense downs several ‘enemy targets’ in southern Syria – reportsMeanwhile, Syria TV reported that a missile strike against Syria was deflected, without specifying what the downed objects were. The incident reportedly occurred in the Kiswah area, located 13 kilometers (8 miles) south of Damascus.

Like this story? Share it with a friend!

Sexual Morality: Opening the Floodgates

The Jew as Adversary in the Battle Over Obscenity, Pornography and Sexual Morality – Part 4: Opening the Floodgates

Allen Ginsberg

Part 1Part 2Part 3

“Under the [Hicklin test], any obscenity in a work, no matter how slight, contaminated the whole; under the [Roth test], any slight redeeming trait purified it.” – Leo Pfeffer1

The first major publication to reap the benefits of the precedent set by the Rothdecision (discussed in part 3), was Howl and Other Poems by the Jewish “Beat” poet Allen Ginsberg.

The Beats, or the “Beat Generation,” were a literary clique centered around Ginsberg. They were all criminals, degenerates, junkies and mentally insane sexual deviants, and indeed reveled in those qualities and promoted them as the ideal way to be. In effect, they were the precursor to the broader “counterculture” movement which would ultimately revolutionize America with “Sex, Drugs, and Rock and Roll” in the 1960s and 1970s (see part 5).

Both of Ginsberg’s parents were Russian born Jews, and he had a very disturbed upbringing. His father was a socialist, and Ginsberg wrote of “getting hard-ons” while sleeping in bed with him, “rubbing up against his leg, just pressing close and holding on to him.”2

His mother was a die-hard Communist who brought him and his siblings to Communist summer camp, making Ginsberg a “red diaper baby.” She eventually developed paranoid schizophrenia and suffered severe hallucinations, believing Ginsberg’s father was trying to poison her and once seeing Hitler’s moustache in the sink.3

In her later years, she would wander around the house naked, and believed that the government was beaming radio waves into her brain and reading her thoughts. Ginsberg eventually sanctioned a lobotomy on her in an attempt to alleviate her suffering, and never forgave himself for this act.

Ginsberg himself was a lifelong homosexual and sexual predator who got off on convincing straight men to sleep with him, and was also a member and vocal supporter of the pederasty advocate group the North American Man/Boy Love Association (NAMBLA).4

Howl, written in 1956, was a reflection of Ginsberg’s deranged Jewish mind. With its innumerable references to “cocks,” “cunts,” “semen,” and those “who let themselves be fucked in the ass by saintly motorcyclists,” publishing it was a risky endeavor at that time, given the existing obscenity laws.

The “avant-garde” book store owner Lawrence Ferlinghetti decided to take the risk, after receiving assurance from the heavily Jewish American Civil Liberties Union that they would defend the publication were it to run into trouble – “which I almost hope it does,” Ginsberg wrote to his father. “I am almost ready to tackle the U.S. Govt out of sheer self delight.”5

Trouble it soon found.

Ferlinghetti was raided on June 3, 1957 (just three weeks before the Roth decision), arrested, and charged with obscenity. One of the shrewdest and most famous Jewish lawyers in the country, Jake Ehrlich, whom the popular TV character Perry Mason was based on, took the lead in the case.

Jake Ehrlich

Naturally, Ehrlich and his team structured their defense on the Roth decision, which had changed the definition of obscenity to whether or not a work overall had “redeeming social and literary value.” This didn’t leave the prosecutor with much to work with. He would have to somehow prove that the entire work was meaningless; an almost impossible task.

The defense, on the other hand, only had to track down a few of the untold thousands of literary authorities who could be shown to have credentials, to claim that the work was of great merit. Of this they brought nine.6

The presiding judge, Clayton Horn, despite being a devout Christian who had notoriously sentenced a shoplifter to a viewing of the Charleton Heston movie The 10 Commandments, followed a strict reading of Roth and reversed the charge and found Howl not obscene.

Aside from further liberalizing obscenity law, the attempted suppression of Howlcatapulted Ginsberg, the Beats, and their works to national fame with the extensive media coverage. Howl sold tens of thousands of copies before the trial was even concluded, and Ginsberg and the Beats were profiled by such widely read outlets as LifeTime and the San Francisco Chronicle.7

Emboldened by the Roth and Howl decisions, Jewish publisher Barney Rosset decided he would challenge obscenity laws directly.

Rosset, born in Chicago in 1922, was a radical leftist even in his youth, publishing his first newspaper, The Sommunist (socialist/communist), while still in high school. He was under surveillance by the government for his radicalism, and suspected “disaffection,” beginning in 1943.8

Upon returning from WWII, where he served mainly as a photographer, Rosset joined the Communist party in Chicago for a time and then in 1948 produced the documentary ‘Strange Victory,’ in which he attacked America as racist like the Nazis. “We took Hitler home with us, specifically in terms of racial problems in this country,” he asserted.

strangevictory
America fought to save the Jews from Hitler only to have many of them turn around and stab her in the back.

After receiving a hefty inheritance from his father, who was a wealthy Jewish banker, Rosset purchased the publishing company Grove Press in 1951, where he employed Jews almost exclusively (see footnote), and would continue promoting his radical leftist agenda, becoming the foremost publisher of “counterculture” materials throughout the 50s, 60s and 70s.9

Being a far-left Jew, Rosset was virulently anti-White and pro-Black. He published radical Black authors such as Malcolm X and Amiri Baraka, who wrote outrageous anti-White vitriol such as: “Rape the white girls. Rape their fathers. Cut the mothers’ throats” and “You cant steal nothin from a white man, he’s already stole it he owes you anything you want, even his life.”10

Rosset was a pervert to boot. He was admittedly obsessed with pornographic materials his entire life. As such he was naturally against all forms of censorship. He compared censorship to anti-miscegenation attitudes (“the fear that your daughter would sleep with a black man and the fear that your daughter would read that book”), and fought vehemently for the dissolution of those two taboos, apparently viewing a society where everyone’s daughter could screw Blacks and read pornographic books without consequence as an ideal utopia to strive for.

Rosset was an unhinged, effeminate man, driven by his impulses. A Military Intelligence report described him as one who “totally lacks sound judgment.” “[H]e is incapable of appraising people,” it reads, “all of his impressions and judgments are based upon emotional reactions.” This assessment was agreed upon by all of Rosset’s associates who were contacted by Grove Press chronicler Loren Glass.11

b2bdb818decc085cc04cb121cb68e4abe1ad9604

These impulses drove him into taking the risk that no other of his ideological kin were willing to take. He published two of the most infamous banned books, Lady Chatterley’s Lover by British author D. H. Lawrence, and Tropic of Cancer by Henry Miller, back to back.

Lady Chatterley’s Lover, the milder of the two, came first (against the wishes of the Lawrence estate), specifically to pave the way for Tropic of Cancer.12

“Chatterley he really didn’t give too much of a damn about,” says one of Rosset’s colleagues in a 2007 documentary about him, Obscene. “He didn’t really think that was a wonderful book. But he was convinced that he needed a book of that stature in order to prepare the Tropic of Cancer case.”

It follows that Rosset would not appreciate Lady Chatterley’s Lover, as Lawrence’s anti-modernity, anti-egalitarian political and philosophical views were diametrically at odds with Rosset’s extreme leftism.13

Lawrence, though friendly with many Jews, was also somewhat of an anti-Semite, at least by today’s standards. He blamed the Jews for modern decadence, and would often berate and criticize them. In a letter to one “very bossy and over-bearing Jew,” according to Lawrence biographer Jeffrey Meyers, “he stated that the Jews were elitist and smug”; to another, Waldo Frank, he wrote that “they were a cringing race, for their pride as the Chosen People both provoked and compensated for their persecution.”

On another occasion Lawrence wrote, in agreement with Edward Gibbon (paraphrasing what Gibbon wrote in his history of the Roman Empire), that “the Jews are the great haters of the human race – and the great anti-social principle.”14

According to Lawrence, “humanity hated the Jews” because of their conceited, self-worshiping religion, which he personally found to be “abominable.”15

Though Lady Chatterley’s Lover is indeed a bit explicit, especially for its time, for his part Lawrence was against outright pornography. In his essay Obscenity and Pornography, he wrote: “But even I would censor genuine pornography, rigorously. It would not be very difficult.” 16

“About Lady C,” he later wrote to Aldous Huxley, author of the prophetic Brave New World, “you mustn’t think I advocate perpetual sex in and out of season. Nothing nauseates me more than perpetual sex in and out of season. . . . God forbid that I should be taken as urging loose sex activity.”17

It would then seem that Lawrence, who died in 1930, would have been displeased to see how the Jews later used his work as a means of clearing the path for “genuine pornography” and broader sexual liberation.

MTE5NDg0MDU1MjYwNzkyMzM1
D.H. Lawrence

Henry Miller, on the other hand, was Rosset’s hero. “He just had a contempt for this country that I shared,” Rosset explains, in Obscene. “I said, well we’ll publish Lady Chatterley’s Lover first and when we win that battle we will then do Tropic of Cancer. I didn’t do that to save humanity, I did it to save Tropic of Cancer.”

Rosset’s plan paid off in spades. Lady Chatterley’s Lover was cleared and became Grove Press’s most successful publication, selling almost 2 million copies by 1960. This earned them enough money to fund future court battles, and secured their reputation as the premier fighters on the front line of the battle over obscenity.

Following this victory, Rosset and Grove Press prepared to publish Tropic of Cancer, which had first been published by their European counterpart, Obelisk.

Founded in France by a Jewish expatriate from England, Jack Kahane, Obelisk specialized in publishing books that were banned in English speaking countries (those who traveled through France could then easily purchase them).

Following his death, Kahane’s son Maurice Giordias took over Obelisk, and changed its name to Olympia in 1953. Giordias, like his father before him, delighted in subverting European mores with obscenity: “It was great fun,” he recalled in a memoir,

The Anglo-Saxon world was being attacked, invaded, infiltrated, outflanked, and conquered by this erotic armada. The Dickensian schoolmasters of England were convulsed with helpless rage, the judges’ hair was standing on end beneath their wigs, black market prices in New York and London for our green-backed products were soaring to fantastic heights.18

1990-Clouseau

Tropic of Cancer is an unbelievable sewer of filth – an all out assault on decency.

“This is not a book,” Miller writes in the introduction. “This is a libel, slander, defamation of character. This is not a book, in the ordinary sense of the word. No, this is a prolonged insult, a gob of spit in the face of Art, a kick in the pants to God, Man, Destiny, Time, Love, Beauty … what you will.”19

Miller, though not a Jew himself, was married to one. And he writes of a Jewess, Tania, in Tropic of Cancer (which is semi-autobiographical), “for her sake I too would become a Jew. Why not? I already speak like a Jew.”20 He then fantasizes about having sex with her as follows:

O Tania, where now is that warm cunt of yours, those fat, heavy garters, those soft, bulging thighs? There is a bone in my prick six inches long. I will ream out every wrinkle in your cunt, Tania, big with seed. . . . I know how to inflame a cunt. I shoot hot bolts into you Tania, I make your ovaries incandescent. . . . After me you can take on stallions, bulls, rams, drakes, St. Bernards. You can stuff toads, bats, lizards up your rectum. . . . I will tear off a few hairs from your cunt and paste them on Boris’ chin. I will bite into your clitoris and spit out two franc pieces…21

Needless to say, the ante had been raised a bit from Lawrence’s much tamer work. Nationwide outrage brought Tropic of Cancer to court in over sixty different obscenity trials following its publication.

tocbanned

Grove Press had convinced vendors to carry Tropic on the promise that they would pay the court costs should it run into trouble, and they did just that – for all sixty some odd cases – using their massive profits from Lady Chatterley’s Lover.

The most significant of all these cases was the infamous “Chicago trial,” which was the first to rule the book not obscene. “What goes unmentioned in accounts of this crucial trial,” Josh Lambert writes in Unclean Lips: Obscenity, Jews and American Culture,

is the prominence of Jews among the advocates for Miller’s novel. Haiman, the plaintiff who initiated the suit, was Jewish, and so was his lawyer . . . Elmer Gertz. The book’s publisher, Rosset, considered himself half Jewish. The paperback of Miller’s book contained an introduction by the poet Karl Shapiro, whose most recent collection of verse was titled Poems of a Jew. Gertz called as the first expert witness to testify on behalf of the novel . . . Richard Ellmann, son of Jewish immigrants from Romania and Ukraine. The presiding Judge, Samuel B. Epstein . . . had come to Chicago in 1911 to lead one of the nation’s largest Orthodox Jewish communities.22

And so it went. With the stroke of a pen of one Jewish judge (who just so happened to be a personal friend of Barney Rosset’s father), Tropic of Cancer was cleared, against the wishes of the people of Illinois, who were represented by law enforcement officials of no less than ten different districts.23

Even the Mayor, Richard Daley, had put heavy pressure on Judge Epstein not to clear the book, but it was to no avail.24

“The day [Judge Epstein] handed down his decision,” Rosset wrote in his autobiography, “I sensed we were in the home stretch. No matter what came next, I knew Tropic of Cancer had been set free from the philistines.”25

Soon after, the Supreme Court concurred with the Chicago decision, officially clearing the book nationwide on June 22, 1964.

This resulted in the Illinois Supreme Court’s reversal of another obscenity conviction, that of Jewish comedian Lenny Bruce.

Lenny Bruce and his many high profile battles with the authorities had become a counterculture cause célèbre around this time. Allen Ginsberg even formed an ‘Emergency Committee Against the Harassment of Lenny Bruce’ and circulated a petition of protest that was ultimately signed by eighty-eight public figures, about half of whom were Jews such as Bob Dylan, Norman Mailer, Alfred Kazin, Max Lerner, Lionel Trilling, Paul Newman, Woody Allen, Susan Sontag, Irving Kristol, Norman Podhoretz and Irving Howe.26

Bruce, born Alfred Leonard Schneider in 1925, had been testing the bounds of decency and shocking audiences and authorities as early as 1957, the same year as the Roth decision, with disgusting bits such as: “A kid looks up at his father and he says, ‘What’s a degenerate?’ The father says, ‘Shut up, kid, and keep sucking!’”27

On one occasion he came out on stage naked at a strip club where he was set to perform, and urinated in a hole on the stage to “protest” on behalf of strippers, who had been complaining about getting their high-heels stuck in it.28

His first obscenity arrest was at the Jazz Workshop in San Francisco in 1961. He was arrested for several different bits, one where he called the audience “cocksuckers,” and another where he kept repeating “come in me, come in me, come in me,” attempting to make the point that since those three words taken individually (“come,” “in,” and “me”) are innocuous, regarding them as obscene when strung together is somehow unreasonable (such was the typical Lenny logic that many people, with a straight face, claimed was “brilliant social satire.”)

bruce2
Lenny Bruce during one of his arrests.

The case was brought before the same judge who presided over the Howl trial mentioned above, Clayton Horn, who instructed the jury so narrowly within the confines of Roth they had no choice but to find Bruce not guilty.

“We hate this verdict,” one juror told the press. “But under the instructions there was nothing we could do but give the not guilty verdict.” A second juror added: “That’s the way all of us felt, and I hope you newspaper people will report this, that we all felt the law should be tightened.”29

Ultimately Bruce was arrested at least eight times for obscenity, and many other times for drugs and other offenses. Once he was even arrested for an elaborate scam in which he posed as a priest and solicited donations for a leper colony. He made quite a habit of sabotaging his own trials though, repeatedly firing high profile lawyers and insisting on representing himself, and then acting outrageous in and out of the courtroom.

For instance, on December 16, 1964, he recited in court a bit of his about an outraged liberal who was judged unfairly by an all Black jury. For the punchline it is revealed that the liberal, who claimed to have “been since 1939 with that integration shit,” was still a racist deep down (one of Lenny’s main themes was that all Whites are inherently racist): “They gave me twenty years for raising my voice – those niggers!”

Judge Thurgood Marshall, who would go on to be the first Black to serve on the Supreme Court, was not amused. According to Jewish lawyer Martin Garbus, who was present, Judge Marshall’s “head jerked up and he nearly dropped a pen from his hand.” Bruce, seeing this reaction “stumbled, tried bravely to explain the joke, but could not. Then he knew he had lost the case and sat down.”30

On another occasion, in December of 1964, with astonishingly idiotic chutzpah, Bruce invoked the alleged eternal victimhood of the chosen ones, exclaiming to an already exasperated courtroom: “I am a Jew before this Court [and] I would like to set the record straight, that the Jew is not remorseful.”31

This latter case was the most important of all of Bruce’s trials, which taken altogether were by far the most numerous and costly in the history of American obscenity law (see footnote).32

He was convicted to four months in the workhouse, but granted a stay of execution. This gave him the opportunity to appeal, which he blundered through in his characteristically stubborn and self-defeating way and ultimately lost.

Rather than serving the four months, Lenny jumped bail, leaving New York for San Francisco, where he essentially went off the deep end. His stand-up routines were reduced to him rambling and droning on, obsessing over his court battles – generally in a drugged-out stupor – and were deemed boring and unfunny by even his staunchest defenders and fans.

High on a joint soaked in DMT in a hotel room in March of 1965, Bruce told his friend Eric Miller to spit in his face, and then stripped naked and jumped up on – and then fell through – a two-story high window, badly injuring his legs and ankles, before screaming wildly and fighting with cops and ambulance attendants.33

Eighteen months later, on August 3, 1966, he fell off the toilet onto his bathroom floor. He was naked, with a needle sticking out of his arm, dead of a morphine overdose at the age of 40.

Despite his early death, Bruce effectively paved the way for, and is considered an influence and hero by, all dirty comedians (who are all too frequently Jewish) that came after him, singlehandedly doing for comedy what the Jew Howard Stern – who needs no elaboration – did for radio, by breaking down all bounds of decency.

The Jewish owner of the Cafe Au Go Go, Howard Solomon, who had been charged along with Bruce, later had his conviction reversed on appeal, effectively exonerating Bruce posthumously. The decision cited to reverse Solomon (and by extension Bruce) was Memoirs v. Massachusetts, concerning the book Fanny Hill: Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure by John Cleland.

Jewish Judge Arthur Klein of the New York Supreme Court had ruled Fanny Hill not obscene in 1963, and it was appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Fanny Hill’s significance laid in the fact that, unlike HowlLady Chatterley’s Lover, and Tropic of Cancer, it was well known that it was purely pornography, without any pretense to “artistic merit” or “redeeming social value.”

Cleland intentionally made the book salacious in order to make a quick buck, as he was facing debtor’s prison. He never denied this motive.

Justice Tom C. Clark wrote in the Supreme Court’s decision of Fanny Hill that he had “’stomached’ past cases for almost 10 years without much outcry,” but “this book is too much even for me.”

Memoirs is nothing more than a series of minutely and vividly described sexual episodes.” After setting up the story for “10 pages,” he explains, the

remaining 200 pages of the book detail her initiation into various sexual experiences . . . presented to the reader through an uninterrupted succession of descriptions by Fanny . . . These scenes run the gamut of possible sexual experience such as lesbianism, female masturbation, homosexuality between young boys, the destruction of a maidenhead with consequent gory descriptions, the seduction of a young virgin boy, the flagellation of male by female, and vice versa, followed by fervid sexual engagement, and other abhorrent acts, including over two dozen separate bizarre descriptions of different sexual intercourses between male and female characters. . . .

“There can be no doubt that the whole purpose of the book is to arouse the prurient interest,” he continued, stating the obvious. “Likewise the repetition of sexual episode after episode and the candor with which they are described renders the book ‘patently offensive.’ These facts weigh heavily in any appraisal of the book’s claims to ‘redeeming social importance.’”

Justice Clark was in the minority though. The ultra-liberal Warren Court ultimately concurred with the Jew Arthur Klein, and declared the book not obscene on March 21, 1966, with a 6-3 vote. After that, all obscenity cases on appeal at the Supreme Court were summarily reversed.

Lady Chatterley’s LoverTropic of Cancer and Fanny Hill were all defended by the Jewish lawyer Charles Rembar. In his book on the trials, The End of Obscenity, Rembar wrote that the “Fanny Hill decision produced the cry, pained or joyful, as the case might be, ‘The lid is off!’”34

rembar

“[W]ith each of the books I defended,” Rembar goes on to explain, “most people who gave attention to the matter were against its publication. It cannot be stressed too often that it was the United States Constitution that saved these books, and not the will of the people.”35

And regarding the minority who agitated against “the will of the people,” with this revisionist interpretation of the Constitution, the over-representation of Jews also cannot be over-stressed, as I believe the above evidence shows.

Two other major landmark decisions on obscenity were handed down by the Supreme Court on the same day as Fanny Hill.

One was for the issue of “hardcore pornography,” with the infamous Jewish smut-peddler Eddie Mishkin (see part 2) as defendant. The other was on the issue of “pandering,” with Ralph Ginsberg, who was – believe it or not – also a Jew, as defendant.

Both were affirmed – but to little effect. The new criteria for obscenity, now the Roth-Memoirs test, was so broad that as long as one added a veneer of “redeeming social value” – be it a few quotes from Shakespeare, or whatever – they could get away with just about anything.

Or, as Jewish activist Leo Pfeffer gleefully put it in his book God, Caesar, and the Constitution, all that could be hoped to be censored now was “the hardest of the hardcore.”36 And, as we’ll see in part 8, even that would be unleashed by the end of the decade.

The veritable floodgates, for all intents and purposes, had been opened.

These decisions did not happen in a vacuum though, of course. They ran concurrent to the shifting view on sexual permissiveness being brought about by the largely Jewish-driven sexual and cultural revolution raging throughout America at that time.

This sexual and cultural revolution will be the topic of the next three parts, beginning with part 5, where we look at the Jewish intellectual movements of psychoanalysis, sexology, and the Frankfurt School, and their pseudo-scientific justifications for sexual liberation, and part 6, where we explore in depth the life and theories of the Jew Wilhelm Reich.


If you enjoyed this series, please consider tipping the author. A considerable amount of time and money was spent on writing and researching it.

You can also support this work by purchasing a print copy from Lulu.

Btc address: 14KQkvSS26QbY264yLXK586GuYZkmM7BS4

Notes

  1. Leo Pfeffer, God, Caesar, and the Constitution: The Court as Referee of Church-State Confrontation, 1974, p.315 
  2. Edward de Grazia, Girls Lean Back Everywhere: The Law of Obscenity and the Assault on Genius, 1992, p.328 
  3. Christopher Turner, Adventures in the Orgasmatron: How the Sexual Revolution Came to America, 2011, p.266 
  4. Bill Morgan, The Typewriter is Holy: The Complete, Uncensored History of the Beat Generation, 2010, p.37 
  5. Ronald L.K. Collins & David M. Skover, Mania: The Story of the Outraged and Outrageous Lives That Launched a Cultural Revolution, 2013, p.226 
  6. For an abridged transcript of the trial see Lawrence Ferlinghetti and J.W. Ehrlich, Howl of the Censor, 1961 
  7. Collins & Skover, p.253-254 
  8. Loren Glass, Counterculture Colophon: Grove Press, the Evergreen Review, and the Incorporation of the Avant-Garde, 2013, p.5 
  9. Ibid., p.14-15: “Most of the key players at Grove were New York Jews. Fred Jordan, Rosset’s right-hand man throughout the 1960s, was a Holocaust survivor. . . . As the company expanded, Rosset hired more New York Jews, including Morrie Goldfischer; Nat Sobel; Herman Graf; Myron Shapiro, who ran the book club; Jules Geller, who ran the educational division; and Harry Braverman, who was a prominent editor and jack-of-all-trades at the company on and off throughout the 1960s. All of these men came from traditions of left-wing Jewish activism and cultural entrepreneurship, with many having close ties to labor groups such as the Socialist Workers Party.” 
  10. Amiri Baraka, The Dead Lecturer: Poems by Leroi Jones, 1964, p.63; “Black People,” Published in Grove Press’s Evergreen Review, 1967 
  11. Glass, p.5 
  12. Jay Gertzman, Samuel Roth: Infamous Modernist, 2013, p.265 
  13. For more on Lawrence’s political and philosophical views see here 
  14. That Jews have an “irreconcilable hatred of mankind,” was Gibbon’s exact phrasing in The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, Volume II, Chapter 16 
  15. All quotes from Jeffrey Meyers, D.H. Lawrence: A Biography, 2002, p.132-33 (emphases in original) 
  16. D.H. Lawrence, Late Essays and Articles, 2004, p. 241 
  17. Meyers, p.361 
  18. Gay Talese, Thy Neighbor’s Wife, 1981, p.114 
  19. Henry Miller, Tropic of Cancer, 1934, p.5 (ellipsis in original) 
  20. Ibid. p.8 
  21. Ibid. p.11 
  22. Josh Lambert, Unclean Lips: Obscenity, Jews and American Culture, 2013, p.2 
  23. Glass, p.114: “Arlington Heights, Skokie, Glencoe, Lincolnwood, Morton Grove, Niles, Des Plaines, Mount Prospect, Winnetka, and Evanston.” 
  24. De Grazia, p.380 
  25. Barney Rosset, My Life in Publishing and How I Fought Censorship, 2016, p.203 
  26. David E. Kaufman, Jewhooing the Sixties: American Celebrity and Jewish Identity, 2012, p.140 
  27. Ronald L.K. Collins, The Trials of Lenny Bruce, 2002, p.49 
  28. Ibid., p.96 
  29. Ibid., p.87 
  30. De Grazia, p.452 
  31. Collins, p.299 
  32. Ibid, p.383: “The legacy of People v. Bruce is unparalleled in the history of American law. When it was over, really over, the prosecution of Lenny Bruce for misdemeanor obscenity: Involved at least eight obscenity arrests (for Bruce alone)—Entailed six trials in four cities—Took some four years and some 3,500 pages of trial transcripts—Required eight state trial judges (not including the numerous judges who heard bail matters and preliminary motions, etc.)—Involved more than a dozen state attorneys and double that number of billable-hour defense lawyers—Prompted legal actions by Bruce in federal courts in New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco—Consumed untold man-hours and amounts of public monies—Involved appeals and/or petitions to state high courts, federal appellate courts, and the U.S. Supreme Court (presided over, in total, by twenty-five state and federal appellate judges, plus nine more judges in People v. Solomon)—And bankrupted Bruce, who once made nearly $200,000 a year in the early 1960s.” 
  33. De Grazia, p.475 
  34. Charles Rembar, The End of Obscenity: The Trials of Lady Chatterley, Tropic of Cancer & Fanny Hill by the Lawyer Who Defended Them, 1968, p.13 
  35. Ibid., p.174 (emphasis mine) 
  36. Pfeffer, p.312 

Bobby Fischer’s “Notes on the Jew”

Bobby Fischer is seen by many as the greatest chess player of all time. Whether that is true or not, is impossible to know. But that he is the most famous, important and influential player of all time is not even up for dispute. He captivated the world with his prodigious talent and genius, and pretty much singlehandedly put chess on the map.

The 1972 World Chess Championship, in which he defeated Boris Spassky 12½–8½, was seen as a Cold War proxy battle between the U.S. and the Soviet Union, which was at the time the source of the majority of the world’s most formidable players.

Fischer was only 28 years old at the time. His victory over Spassky and the Soviets, and the meteoric rise that led to it (Fischer had become both the youngest grandmaster and the youngest U.S. Chess Champion by the age of 15) was a source of great pride for our nation, and he became a national hero.

Despite his unfortunate partial Jewish heritage, Fischer also absolutely hated the Jews. He saw what they had done and were doing to the world, and was not at all ashamed or afraid to openly call them out for it, regardless of the negative consequences it brought upon him and his legacy.

Living in Brooklyn, New York, from the age of 6, Fischer had many bad experiences dealing with Jews throughout his life. The chess world was also riddled with them. According to Fischer, in a 1961 interview with Jew pornographer Ralph Ginzburg, there were “too many Jews in chess” and they had “taken away the class of the game.”

In the video above, we hear what is probably his most poignant statement against the Jews. It comes from an interview Fischer gave to Philippino grandmaster Eugenio Torre, while he was locked in jail in Japan as a political prisoner in 2005.

Here is a transcript:

A few notes on the Jew:

Jews are anti-social, destructive, intolerant, mean-spirited, deceitful, et cetera. They wish to destroy, rule and kill, rob whoever gets in their way. To facilitate them getting what they want, they have developed a perverted, unnatural, destructive, evil lifestyle.

Even though they live off the non-Jews as parasites, they still hate them and wish to destroy them. Jews hate nature and the natural order, because it’s pure and beautiful, and also because it’s bigger and stronger than they are, and they feel that they can not fully control it. Nature’s beauty and harmony stands in stark contrast to their squalidness and ugliness, and that makes them hate it all the more.

Jews are destroyers. They are anti-humans. The anti-human Jew hates and wants to destroy all non-Jews. He will also destroy even other Jews who are less destructive and evil than he is, if they get in his way.

Apparently, the wickedness of the Jew is genetically based. Jews are destroyers. They are anti-humans. By the act of circumcision, the Jew shows his hatred towards nature and the natural order. By this bloody, cruel, senseless act, he shows his cruelty and sadism, and that he will stop at nothing to obtain his ends. Surely the Jews are also behind the Islamic circumcision, which serves as an ideal cover and distraction from their own wickedness in this regard.

Jews are truly anti-human and anti-nature. Jews are intensely selfish, intolerant and anti-social, et cetera. They are full of hate, greed, malice, et cetera. Naturally, other people, i.e. the non-Jews, don’t like being bulldozed aside, robbed and murdered by the Jews, and will sooner or later resist. That is where the lies and deceit of the Jews come into place.

Following this, the interviewer objects with some platitudes about “peace and unity” and everybody all getting along, to which Fischer replies “I don’t think there’ll be any peace until these Jews are dealt with Eugene – these people are animals.”

And he was absolutely right. I couldn’t have said it better myself.

The Jews dismiss Fischer’s truthful anti-Semitic statements by slandering him as being nothing more than a crazy paranoiac (here is their most recent hit piece against him).

It’s true he maybe was a bit crazy and a bit paranoid at times, especially in his later years, but that doesn’t change the fact that he was spot-on about the evil and destructive nature of the Jew.

Fischer had an IQ somewhere between 180 and 187 – the kikes weren’t fooling him.

Germany denies free speech on Israel’s crimes

German police have used heavy-handed tactics against Palestine solidarity campaigners.Anne PaqActiveStills

A few years ago German police dragged me across the bare gravel, my face pushed into the cold ground.

It was fall 2015. Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel’s prime minister, had declared that Haj Amin al-Husseini, a Palestinian political and religious leader, talked Adolf Hitler into exterminating the Jews.

A group of us protested against this disgraceful and dishonest claim outside the Chancellery in Berlin. We held placards reading “Netanyahu is a Holocaust denier.”

That evening I was hospitalized due to my violent arrest.

A Palestinian from Gaza and I had been asked by the police for our identity documents immediately after the demonstration ended. Although we fully cooperated, the police resorted to brutality.

I screamed as police officers dragged me along the ground. One officer placed her feet on me. Another officer twisted my arms; it felt like he was trying to break my fingers.

Next, I was thrown into a van. A police officer mocked me in front of his colleagues. He told me – using a sexist tone – that I was a great actress and should star in movies.

An investigation soon ensued. I was accused of defaming a foreign head of government and disobeying a police officer.

Each of these charges was punishable by three years in prison.

With a sword of Damocles above my head, I had to withdraw from political activity in case it would put my doctoral studies at risk.

The charges were dropped after a few months. Yet I remained silent for most of the next two years.

Climate of intolerance

After completing my studies, I decided to resume activism. I did so against the backdrop of German politics becoming more extreme.

The most notable manifestation of this trend is how the far-right Alternative for Germany – known by its acronym AfD – has become the third largest party in the federal assembly, the Bundestag.

Amid this climate of intolerance, dissenters – and particularly those who criticize Israel – are subjected to smears and even criminalized. I learned this for myself during June 2017, when I took part in a protest at Berlin’s Humboldt University.

The protest involved disrupting a talk given by Aliza Lavie, a member of Israel’s parliament, the Knesset. Lavie used the occasion to engage in “pinkwashing” – presenting Israel as a haven for LGBT rights in an attempt to divert attention from its oppression of the Palestinians.

Ronnie Barkan, Majed Abusalama and I are facing a criminal trial over that protest.

The three of us have been charged with trespassing. I have also been accused of assault – though the charges do not specify who was assaulted. The trial is scheduled to open in March next year.

Our actions have attracted negative media attention accusing us of anti-Semitism. The fictitious allegation was even repeated – without providing evidence – in a report published by the Berlin Senate.

The assassination of our characters belongs to a wider pattern whereby consent is manufactured on shielding Israel from criticism. Yet the smearing of dissidents is nothing but a distraction from truths that can no longer be concealed: the crime of apartheid that Israel has practiced in a barbaric and systematic way for decades and how Germany has been complicit in that crime.

Suppressing political speech is an infringement of basic liberties. No country can genuinely claim to defend human rights if it denies freedom of thought and expression.

Curbing dissent can also have horrific ramifications as it weakens the power of campaigners and campaigning organizations to hold governments and institutions accountable.

Germany’s own experience illustrates the danger of crushing dissent.

Historians have long documented the social, economic and political factors behind why the Nazis came to power in the 1930s. Their analysis has often overlooked one important point. Fascism flourished in Germany because there wasn’t a vast resistance movement against it.

With the rise of AfD and the growing support for its racism, anti-Semitism and pro-Israel extremism, such resistance is needed once again in Germany.

Stavit Sinai is an Israeli activist. Her book Sociological Knowledge and Collective Identity will be published by Routledge in 2019.


Windows on the World: Antifa Handbook – The Protocols of Zion

Mark Windows and Tony Hurst discuss the recent targeting by Antifa of a debating group in London and the bigger picture of Antifa.

Trump: US Troops Will Stay in Middle East to Protect Israel

(MEMO— US President Donald Trump has admitted that the US only keeps its troops in the Middle East to protect Israel.

In an interview with the Washington Post yesterday, Trump explained that he would not withdraw US troops from the region because of the need to support Israel, despite the fact that other US concerns such as oil were no longer sufficient reason to remain. Trump told the Post:

Now, are we going to stay in that part of the world [the Middle East]? One reason to is Israel. Oil is becoming less and less of a reason because we’re producing more oil now than we’ve ever produced. So, you know, all of a sudden it gets to a point where you don’t have to stay there.

Trump’s comments have been interpreted as referring specifically to Saudi Arabia – one of the US’ main oil providers and increasingly an Israeli ally – with the Times of Israel suggesting the president “appear[s] to envision a world where the US would be less beholden to Saudi Arabia”.

This triangular relationship between the US, Israel and Saudi Arabia has been forefront in Trump’s decision-making in recent weeks. Last week, Trump suggested that Israel would face severe difficulties without the presence of Saudi Arabia, saying: “The fact is that Saudi Arabia is tremendously helpful in the Middle East, if we didn’t have Saudi Arabia we wouldn’t have a big base [and] Israel would be in big trouble”. Also last week, Trump thanked Saudi Arabia for lowering oil prices, stressing the US would remain a “steadfast partner” of the kingdom and not allow the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi to harm US-Saudi relations or weaken Israel.

It is no secret that the US provides extensive military support to Israel. In October, the largest ever US military aid package to Israel – worth $38 billion to be delivered over a period of ten years – entered into force. US State Department Spokeswoman Heather Nauert explained that: “Under the terms of the Memorandum of Understanding [MOU], the United States will set funding for Israel at levels of $3.3 billion in Foreign Military Financing and $500 million for cooperative programmes for missile defence over each of the next ten years”.

The implementation of the MOU was intended to reflect “the enduring and unshakable commitment of the President [Trump], this Administration, and the American people to Israel’s security,” Nauert added.

The US also regularly raises money to support the Israeli army. In the past two months the Friends of the Israel Defence Force (FIDF) held two galas to raise money for the army, raising a total of $92 million across the two evenings. The first event – held in October in New York – raised $32 million and was attended by over 1,000 US business people and philanthropists, as well as key figures from the Israeli establishment. In November, a second FIDF gala held in Beverly Hills, California raised $60 million and was attended by a host of celebrities, including Ashton Kutcher, Pharrell Williams, Gerard Butler and Katharine McPhee.


This article originally appeared on Middle East Monitor


California faculty vote to suspend Israel study abroad program

A metal placard on a stone wall says "Pitzer College, established 1963."
Faculty at California’s Pitzer College have voted to suspend discriminatory study abroad in Israel programs. (Pitzer College Facebook)

In an effort to fight discrimination against their students, faculty at Pitzer College have called for the suspension of study abroad in Israel programs with the University of Haifa.

Voting by a 4-to-1 ratio in favor, faculty said the programs should be curtailed “until the Israeli state ends its restrictions on entry to Israel based on ancestry and/or political speech” and until Israel “adopts policies granting visas for exchanges to Palestinian universities on a fully equal basis as it does to Israeli universities.”

Professors also rejected their administration’s move to nullify a resolution passed by Pitzer’s student senate last year in support of the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) campaign for Palestinian rights.

In what the board of trustees admitted was an unprecedented step after decades of respecting student autonomy, it had rescinded the students’ vote to suspend purchases from corporations that profit from Israel’s occupation after coming under fire from Israel lobby organizations, according to civil rights group Palestine Legal.

Pitzer is one of several campuses in the Claremont Colleges consortium in southern California.

Claremont Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) said it received the news of the two motions “with great joy.”

“The University of Haifa program is deeply problematic and it is imperative that the colleges withdraw this program from their study abroad curriculums,” the student group said.

Such study abroad programs are part of an Israeli propaganda effort “designed to give international students a ‘positive experience’ of Israel, whitewashing its occupation and denial of Palestinian rights,” according to PACBI, the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel.

They also violate equal rights clauses because Israel regularly denies entry to persons on the basis of their Palestinian, Arab, Middle Eastern, or Muslim ancestry.

By encouraging Pitzer students to participate in the Israel program, “the college has been consciously supporting these discriminatory practices,” Claremont SJP noted.

Israel’s racial profiling has a “discriminatory impact on students participating in educational programs,” while the 2017 passage of its anti-BDS law “means that US students could be prohibited entry into the country for an act of political expression that is fully protected under the US Constitution,” warned the US Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (USACBI).

The group recently launched a call to students and educators not to support or participate in Israel study abroad programs.

“Israeli universities have deep ties to Israeli military occupation and colonization throughout Palestine and are boycottable for this reason alone,” Heike Schotten, an associate professor at the University of Massachusetts Boston and a member of USACBI’s organizing collective, told The Electronic Intifada.

“But Israel’s racist and ideological litmus tests that determine who may – and may not – pass through Israeli-controlled borders means that any US study abroad program in Israel would subject US students to this racist and politically objectionable discrimination,” Schotten added.

“We wouldn’t allow our own students to be treated this way on our campuses. We shouldn’t allow Israel to treat our students this way in an attempt to study at theirs.”

In a statement condemning the Pitzer faculty vote, the University of Haifa alleged that its campus – which is inaccessible to the vast majority of Palestinians from the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip, and from elsewhere around the world – is evidence of Israel’s “commitment to an open and inclusive society in which multiculturalism and interfaith tolerance thrive.”

The university touted the fact that 25 percent of its students are Palestinian citizens of Israel.

But it failed to note that Israel has never allowed the establishment of an Arabic-language university – forcing many Palestinian citizens of Israel who want to pursue higher education in their native language, rather than in Hebrew, to leave their homeland.

Israel supporters have slammed the faculty’s votes and are demanding that the university block implementation of the motions, claiming that they single out Israel and promote “bigotry and anti-Semitism.”

“Falling down on the job”

The move by Pitzer’s faculty to suspend programs with Israeli institutions “is particularly significant because in general, administrations are falling down on the job here,” New York University professor Andrew Ross told The Electronic Intifada. Ross is also a member of USACBI’s organizing collective.

If universities are willing to violate their own basic principles by promoting programs with Israeli institutions in which not all students can participate, Ross said, “it’s up to faculty and students to be the conscience of these institutions.”

For a smaller college like Pitzer, “it does seem possible that faculty votes have a certain amount of power and consequence. It’s not the case everywhere, but they’ve managed to prevail in the face of administrative efforts to suppress this vote,” he added.

The Pitzer faculty motions come on the heels of recent attacks on two instructors at the University of Michiganwho refused to write recommendation letters for students wishing to join study abroad programs in Israel.

Under pressure from Israel lobby groups who smeared professor John Cheney-Lippold’s refusal to write a recommendation letter as anti-Semitism, the University of Michigan took away his merit pay raise and sabbatical and charged him with interfering in the student’s request with his own “personal views and politics.”

University of Michigan graduate student instructor Lucy Peterson, who pledged to support the call to boycott Israeli institutions, also faces potential discipline for refusing to write a recommendation letter.

“The two professors at the University of Michigan began by setting us all an example of our proper conduct in relation to education abroad programs in Israel,” said David Lloyd, a professor at the University of California, Riverside.

“They refused to collaborate with them by writing letters, but there are other ways of not cooperating – including pressuring the institution not to participate in them,” Lloyd told The Electronic Intifada.

Lloyd said that his students who have traveled to Palestine for research or just to visit family have been routinely detained, interrogated and strip-searched.

He added that students understand that they can “put themselves in danger by applying to such programs, so they avoid them.”

Lloyd called the move by Pitzer’s faculty a “major advance” for the academic boycott movement.

He added, “it’s time for some of the larger academic institutions to take the right kind of ethical stand now.”

—————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Study: Chinese Navy may overcome US Navy capabilities within 15 years

submarines

A new study finds that the Chinese Navy may overtake the US Navy within 15 years as global superpower.

On November 28ththe Asia Times published an article by Peter J. Brown, which mostly cites an essay written by Boston College Political Science Professor Robert Ross, an expert on Chinese defense and security policy, which appeared in the influential Lawfare blog on November 18th.

It is titled “The End of US Naval Dominance in Asia,” and claims that the US Navy is not receiving enough funding and requires more so as to secure its position as the world’s dominant naval power.

“The rapid rise of the Chinese Navy has challenged US maritime dominance throughout East Asian waters,” Ross writes. “The US, though, has not been able to fund a robust shipbuilding plan that could maintain the regional security order and compete effectively with China’s naval build-up. The resulting transformation of the balance of power has led to fundamental changes in US acquisitions and defense strategy. Nonetheless, the US has yet to come to terms with its diminished influence in East Asia.”

Ross also stated that China’s fleet will soon outnumber the US one, and it will also be more modern. “From 2017 to 2018, for example, as China’s Navy grew from 328 to 350 ships, more than 70% were of the latest designs – up from 50% in 2010, based on a RAND Corp study.

“China is the largest ship-producing country in the world and at current production rates could soon operate 400 (naval) ships. It commissions nearly three submarines each year, and in two years will have more than 70 in its fleet. The Chinese Navy also operates growing numbers of cruisers, destroyers, frigates and corvettes, all equipped with long-range anti-ship cruise missiles. Between 2013 and 2016, China commissioned more than 30 modern corvettes. At current rates, China could have 430 surface ships and 100 submarines within the next 15 years,” the essay reads.

The Bohai Chinese Naval facility, displaying two JIN class submarines, taken on November 16th, 2018, courtesy of Planet Labs.

Bohai Chinese Naval facility

The Bohai Chinese Naval facility, displaying two JIN class submarines, taken on November 16th, 2018, courtesy of Planet Labs.

Ross reiterates that currently the US Navy retains its maritime superiority in East Asia, however the trend is not so optimistic. “In 12 years, the active US naval fleet will decline to 237 ships and in six years, the US submarine fleet will decline to 48 boats, according to Ross’ data.

“Both the navy and the White House have pushed to grow the US fleet, but budgets have not kept pace with their plans,” Ross writes. “In 2015, the navy planned to increase the fleet to 308 ships by 2022, and the Trump administration plans a 355-ship navy. To reach 308 ships, the navy will have to spend 36% more than the average shipbuilding budget over the past 30 years, requiring a one-third increase in its current budget.

Ross concluded that there is a necessity for a large increase in budget, however it is unlikely that one would be provided.

“If funding continues at the same average maintained for the last three decades, the US Navy will likely purchase 75 fewer ships than planned over the next three decades. To reach a fleet of 355 ships, the navy will need a budget 80% higher than the average shipbuilding budget over the past 30 years, and approximately 50% more than the average budget of the past six years,” Ross found.

Ross also focused on the apparent reluctance or maybe even inability of the US Navy to address the situation it faces. Furthermore, he claimed that strained relationships with traditional allies in East and Southeast Asia are becoming more apparent.

“Developments in the maritime balance have weakened the confidence of East Asian countries in the ability of the United States to fulfill its security commitments and they are improving security cooperation with China,” Ross said.

He also cited Seoul’s recent steps to “calm” China over the deployment of a Theater High-Altitude Terminal Air Defense (THAAD) anti-missile system in South Korea.

“South Korea recently reached an agreement with China to limit missile-defense cooperation with the US and security cooperation with the US-Japan alliance.”

Furthermore, South Korea appeared to be improving its relationship with the North, with Chinese assistance and despite opposition by the US.

There appear to be signs of insecurity among the US ASEAN partners. Furthermore, ASEAN countries appear to be improving relations with Russia and China.

“The Philippines has reduced the scale of its defense cooperation with the United States and improved security ties with China. Beijing now constrains Vietnamese defense cooperation with the US, as well. And China and Malaysia have begun joint military exercises and Malaysia has not supported US policy on Chinese claims in the South China Sea,” writes Ross.

In November 2018, “the [US] Navy carried out its largest-ever exercise with Japan,” Ross says, and goes on to add a cautionary note:

“But increased up-tempo US naval presence in East Asia without the requisite underlying naval capabilities to contend with China’s rise will neither constrain China’s naval activism nor reassure US Allies.”

Meanwhile, China is working on its third aircraft carrier, in addition to unmanned radar and optical monitoring stations are being established in the South China Sea. Artificial Intelligence submarines are also in development, in addition to the unmanned missile boat which was unveiled in early November.

On November 20th, Defense One reported that Western observers likely underestimated the number of Chinese nuclear submarines in development. They have, however, overestimated how many are operational, according to an analysis by Catherine Dill and Jeffrey Lewis of the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey.

It appears that only half of China’s nuclear-armed SSBNs appear to be in operation. Photos of the Bohai Shipyard and the Longpo Naval Facility produced by Planet Labs suggest that “China does not yet have a credible sea-based deterrent,” Dill said. Two of China’s four JIN (or 094)-class subs “appear to not be in operation and are undergoing maintenance or repairs at the Bohai shipyard, suggesting to us that credibility is still in question.”

That is in contrast to the Defense Department’s 2018 China Military Report and CSIS’s Chinapower group, both of which claim China had four operational 094-class submarines.

Dill and Lewish also discovered that China had one more nuclear submarine in development than was previously believed. There were three at Longpo and two at the Bohai shipyard, suggesting that China is well on its way to meeting its goal of eight.

“China is continuing to modernize its nuclear weapons program, broadly,” Dill said. “There’s a big emphasis on the SSBN program because all of their deliverable nuclear weapons are on land-based systems. Expanding into these SSBNs gives China more flexibly and credibility.”

Thus, it appears that China’s constant reported progress may actually put the country ahead, amid the US military’s constant need for more and more money for some of their “money pit” projects.


USS Chancellorsville

Beijing Sends Warships to Warn US Over Its ‘Provocation’ in S China Sea

CC BY 2.0 / Official U.S. Navy Page / USS Chancellorsville

ASIA & PACIFIC

Get short URL
5153

The warning came after the US Pacific Fleet said that its guided-missile cruiser USS Chancellorsville had sailed near the disputed Paracel Islands in the South China Sea to challenge what it described as Beijing’s “excessive maritime claims.”

Beijing has lodged a protest against a US navy ship sailing close to the disputed islands in the South China Sea, according to Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang.

He said that the US ship had entered Chinese waters without permission and that Beijing had made its position known with its “stern representations”.

Geng added that the Chinese military “had sent its ships to watch the US vessel and to warn it to leave the area.”

READ MORE: US Voices Opposition to China’s Military Steps in South China Sea

“Beijing urges the American side to immediately stop such provocative actions, which violate China’s sovereignty and threaten security,” he underscored.

Earlier on Friday, US Navy Commander Nathan Christensen, a spokesman for the US Pacific Fleet, told CNN that the guided-missile cruiser USS Chancellorsville “sailed near the Paracel Islands to challenge excessive maritime claims and preserve access to the waterways, as governed by international law.

Christensen added that the Chancellorsville conducted what is referred to as a “Freedom of Navigation Operation” in the vicinity of the Paracel Islands to challenge claims made by China. He noted that the US warship was shadowed by a Chinese vessel but that all interactions were deemed safe and professional.

READ MORE: ASEAN Does Not Want South China Sea to Become Competitive Arena — Professor

“US Forces operate in the Indo-Pacific region on a daily basis, including the South China Sea. All operations are designed in accordance with international law and demonstrate that the United States will fly, sail and operate wherever international law allows,” Christensen stressed.

Over the past few years, Beijing has cultivated a slew of military assets in strategic areas of the South China Sea for what it calls national defence purposes.

The resource-rich sea, which is also enormously important for trade in and out of Asia, is contested by numerous southeast Asian nations, which each claim unique and frequently overlapping rights to reefs, islets and fishing waters within the area.

READ MORE: Pentagon Chief: US ‘Cannot Accept’ China’s ‘Militarization’ in South China Sea

Apart from China, the Spratly Islands and Paracel Islands, which are among the more frequently disputed territories, are also claimed by Taiwan, Vietnam, Malaysia and the Philippines. China has exerted de facto control over the Paracels since 1974.US officials have long expressed alarm at Beijing’s construction of industrial outposts and military facilities on artificial islands in the South China Sea but have mostly limited their reaction to verbal reproach.

US Navy ships continue to carry out “freedom of navigation” operations in these areas, with US Air Force bombers sometimes conducting flyovers of the South China Sea.

US official: Military action on the table against Iran

Fri Nov 30, 2018 11:45AM [Updated: Fri Nov 30, 2018 11:50AM ]
Brian Hook, the head of the United States’ Iran Action Group, speaks to reporters at Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling in Washington, DC, on November 29, 2018. (Photo by AFP)
Brian Hook, the head of the United States’ Iran Action Group, speaks to reporters at Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling in Washington, DC, on November 29, 2018. (Photo by AFP)

The Trump administration says military action against Iran could be possible should US sanctions against the country fail to curb Tehran from threatening Washington’s interests. 

The threat by Brian Hook, the US State Department’s director of policy planning and head of Iran Action Group, on Thursday came a day after Tehran asserted that it did not seek a war with any other nation.

“We have been very clear with the Iranian regime that we will not hesitate to use military force when our interests are threatened,” Hook said.

“I think right now, while we have the military option on the table, our preference is to use all of the tools that are at our disposal diplomatically,” he said.

He was speaking at a press conference at Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling in Washington, DC in response to a question on possible next steps the US could take against Iran in its maximum pressure campaign against Iran.

Hook spoke at an event held to display pieces of what he claimed were Iranian weapons and military equipment handed over to the US by Saudi Arabia.

Outgoing US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley held a similar event in the same location last November, displaying what she alleged scraps of a missile given by Iran to Yemen’s Houthis.

The show drew ridicule from many observers who questioned the authenticity of the claims made by a diplomat with no knowledge of military matters.

Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Twitter that Iran would not print the “Iranian Standard Institute logo” on its missiles as was the case concerning the “evidence” displayed by the US.

“Try fabricating ‘evidence’ again,” he said, pointing out that a destroyed missile would not “land fully assembled.”

On Thursday, US media questioned the timing of the event, saying it was an attempt to shift the narrative away from Saudi Arabia, which has come under intense scrutiny over the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

It came as the Senate on Wednesday advanced a resolution that would end US military support for the Saudi military campaign in Yemen in a sharp rebuke to President Donald Trump.

Hook tried to dispel those questions, saying there “isn’t anything tied to what’s happening in Saudi Arabia.”

He also sought to press back on criticisms that the display was a political stunt by the Trump administration that could increase tensions in the region.

“This is simply putting out in broad daylight Iran’s missiles and small arms and rockets and UAVs and drones,” he said.

On Wednesday, Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei stressed that the Iranian Armed Forces have to develop their capabilities to deter any potential aggressor. The Leader, however, said the Islamic Republic is not after a war with any country.

The US has stepped up its pressure on Iran under the Trump administration. Back in May, the US left a multi-lateral nuclear deal with the Islamic Republic and imposed sanctions lifted under the agreement.

prairedog
What is Murder Inc. waiting for, The Zionist to give them the Green Light?
Iran, you know the Zionists stooges are coming, you had better be well prepared, not like Iraq or Afghanistan.
Jack Fiercevor 1 Stunde
And what interest is that? American warmongering existence!
Miriam_1> Jack Fiercevor 21 Minute
Those US interests? “The right to:- invade other peoples’ lands, commit terrorist acts, murder their citizens; the right to;- use deception (false flags/fake propaganda/fake news; the right to;- dominate the world in order to steal their resources. Principled, humanitarian nations challenging/defending those US military objectives are thus put on notice, Iran topping the list.
Bring it on you zionist coward criminal babykillers!vor 2 Stunden

Bring it on you coward zionist jews! You only attack defenseless nations, Babies, women, men without weapons. You have threatened Iran with military action since Iranian revolution 1979. You have tried to destabilize Iran internally without success. Why are you waiting? Bring it on!!!!

You have only succeeded in inslaving US and Europé! Well it is their fault, because they allowed you to do so.

US and EU are controlled by these zionist criminal baby-killers! You blamed Hitler. But you have been driven from different countries. You Think you were innocent? Why did you do to these countires that they kicked you out of their country?


Globalist Think Tank Suggests Using Engineered Event As Excuse For WAR With IRAN

—————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————-
Thu Nov 29, 2018 07:04PM [Updated: Thu Nov 29, 2018 09:08PM ]
UN special envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura attends the plenary session of Syria peace talks brokered by Iran, Russia and Turkey in Astana on November 29, 2018. (Photo by AFP)
UN special envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura attends the plenary session of Syria peace talks brokered by Iran, Russia and Turkey in Astana on November 29, 2018. (Photo by AFP)

The guarantor states of the Astana peace process have ended their 11th round of talks in the Kazakh capital, reiterating their strong commitment to Syria’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

Iran, Russia and Syria on Thursday also rejected “all desperate attempts” by foreign-backed militant groups to undermine the sovereignty of the Syrian nation, Syria’s official news agency SANA reported.

Syrian Ambassador to the United Nations Bashar al-Ja’afari called on all foreign forces operating without the permission of Damascus to leave the Arab country.

He also accused the US, Britain, France and Turkey of illegally dispatching troops to Syria and occupying some parts of the country.

In a declaration, the participants in the Astana talks also strongly denounced militant groups for firing shells filled with chlorine gas at Syria’s northern city of Aleppo this week.

The chemical attack was launched from an area in the Idlib de-escalation zone which is controlled by the Jabhat Fateh al-Sham, formerly known as Nusra Front.

In the past, the United States and its allies have used chemical attacks as a pretext to carry out missile strikes against Syria.

The 11th round of talks began Wednesday, with the participation of representatives from the Damascus government and opposition as well as the three guarantor states of the Astana peace process.

The discussions mainly focused on the situation in the de-escalation zone set up in Idlib Province and the creation of a constitutional committee in the war-torn country.

The 10th round of talks within the Astana format took place in the Russian Black Sea resort of Sochi on July 30-31.

The Astana talks have so far resulted in the return of a succession of militant bastions to the government fold, the establishment of safe zones across Syria and the movement of civilians to those regions.

Police Disperse ‘Yellow Vests’ Protest in Brussels With Tear Gas, Water Cannons

A demonstrator gets hit by a water cannon during a protest of the yellow jackets in Brussels, Friday, Nov. 30, 2018

© AP Photo / Francisco Seco

EUROPE

Get short URL – Sputnik
126

The demonstrators in Belgium, dressed in the yellow jackets that have become a symbol of the protests in France, have gathered close to the district where the Belgian government and parliament are based.

The police have dispersed the riots that broke out in Belgium on Friday, using water cannons and tear gas.

Earlier in the day, reports stated that the groups of “yellow jacket” demonstrators, protesting against high taxes and living costs, have already disrupted traffic in Brussels.

“In connection with the rally of ‘yellow vests,’ the Rue de la Loi street (the small ring), tunnels Loi (toward the city centre) and Cinquantenaire (toward the centre) are closed to traffic,” the police of central Brussels said.

The city transport authorities also notified drivers about the disrupted traffic in the centre of the Belgian capital in light of a “spontaneous demonstration.”

READ MORE: Yellow Vests: No Coincidence Macron, Merkel and May are in Dire Straits — Journo

Local law enforcement is closely monitoring the situation, police water cannon trucks have been parked close to the site of the unrest.

Prime Minister Charles Michel has responded to the incident by saying that he wanted to negotiate with the leaders of the protest movement.

Roads have also been blocked near the city of Charleroi, 60 kilometres south of Brussels.


German Chancellor Angela Merkel speaks with US President Donald Trump

Germany’s Former Foreign Minister Brands US ‘Rogue Superpower’

© AP Photo / Jesco Denzel/German Federal Government
EUROPE

Get short URL
3302

Former head of the German Social Democrats Sigmar Gabriel warned about “Europe’s farewell to world history” as he spoke about the challenges Germany and its EU neighbors face, addresses the bloc’s underperformance in its rivalry with China, as well as disagreements with the US.

In his interview to the German outlet Handelsblatt, ex-Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel, who has been recently lecturing in the US, voiced what he considered the key reason why Donald Trump and the Republicans held their positions in the recent midterm elections.

“Trump exists by keeping the country awake with his emotions every day,” Gabriel said.

According to Gabriel, the incumbent US president has prompted him to write a book, which he is now promoting. In it, he brands the US ‘a rogue superpower’, rants about the alienation of Russia from the West and addresses Chinese claims to world power. The German political heavyweight views Trump with a mixture of fascination and fright.

“That one goes right through everything that has seemed right so far. He brutally follows through on what he said he would before the election despite all theories,” Gabriel said, describing Trump’s style in the interview.

The former deputy chancellor suggested that the Democrats’ winning the majority in the house could actually play out well for Trump, who has the perfect starting position following the midterm elections and could always point to the Democrats if he fails to enforce his laws.

“He thinks only in terms of friend-or-foe, he only knows confrontation,” he said.

Gabriel stated that this approach has had an impact on US foreign policy, especially with respect to China, claiming that ‘for Trump, the world is an arena, a battleground.” He pointed out that the US had already alienated from the world to some degree under Barack Obama, and China, Turkey, Iran and Russia are trying to fill the vacuum.

“These are essentially revisionist forces that want to change the world order,” explained Gabriel, saying they strive for multilateralism rather than global treaties.

READ MORE: German Ex-Chancellor Brands US Ambassador in Berlin ‘Occupant Officer’

Gabriel called on Germany to take a sober approach to China, which he described as the only country that has a great geopolitical idea, with the Silk Road.

“I would rather blame ourselves that we have no strategy,” Gabriel said, noting that Germany and Europe were far behind China in the investment race and praising China for its artificial intelligence (AI) ambitions and plans to earmark $150 billion dollars, compared to Germany’s plan to spend three billion euros.

“We did not recognize the technological trends,” Gabriel admitted, saying that Europe has to respond to China, and that otherwise, historians would at some point look back at this time as “Europe’s farewell to world history”.

EU-US relations have been on a rocky path since Donald Trump was sworn in, as the trans-Atlantic partners have clashed on a number of issues, including the growing row over tariffs, Donald Trump’s repeated rants about insufficient military spending, the US withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal and its intention to leave the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF), as Washington has accused Russia of violating it numerous times, while Moscow rejected the allegations.

Israeli Jet Downed by Syrian air defences System – Russia/Syria

Russia/Syria: Israeli Jet Downed by Syria

Syrian air defences have downed several “hostile targets” over the country’s southern region, Syrian news agency SANA reported. A Syrian security source reported that the air defences downed an Israeli combat plane and four missiles. Israeli military has refuted the claims about the downing.

A Syrian security source reported that Syrian air defences have downed an Israeli military plane as well as four missiles over the country’s al-Kiswah area. The downed missiles have failed to reach their targets, the source added.

Later, Israeli military refuted the claims of downed plane in a statement.

​Earlier, Syrian Arab News Agency reported citing a military source that Syria’s air defence forces have intercepted several “hostile targets” over al-Kiswah and downed them.

“Our air defense systems repelled an attack by several enemy targets over the Al-Kiswah area in the south of the country and shot them down,” the Ikhbariya television said, citing a Syrian military source.

Earlier this year, Syrian Arab News Agency’s reporter said that air defences countered another “hostile target” which had breached Syrian air space west of the capital Damascus.The target back then was reportedly destroyed over Deir al-Ashair area. There were no immediate reports as to what it was.

READ MORE: Russia’s S-300 Will be Able to Close Parts of Syrian Airspace — Moscow

Previously, Syrian President Bashar Assad said that he did not exclude another US strike anytime as long as the United States continued to violate international laws, adding that Syria will continue beefing up its air defences.


The detained Ukrainian ships are delivered to the port of Kerch

Tusk ‘Sure’ EU to Roll Over Sanctions Against Russia Over Kerch Row in December

Press service of border management of FSB of the Russian Federation in the Republic of Crimea

EUROPE

Get short URL – Sputnik
Kerch Strait Row (44)
6240

The Kerch Strait incident took place on Sunday when three Ukrainian naval vessels, heading from the Black Sea to the Azov Sea, tried to pass through the strait without obtaining permission from Russia and thus illegally crossing the country’s sea border.

European Council President Donald Tusk said on Friday he was sure that the EU leaders would roll out new sanctions against Russia due to Moscow’s response to Ukraine’s naval activity in the Kerch Strait.

READ MORE: NATO to Keep Monitoring Black Sea Following Ukraine’s Kerch Strait Provocation

“The de-escalation in the Sea of Azov is a cause of a grave concern to us, and of course Russia’s use of force against Ukrainian ships is totally unacceptable… Europe is united in its support of Ukrainian sovereignty and territorial integrity. And this is why I am sure that the EU will roll over the sanctions against Russia in December,” Tusk said at a press conference during G20 summit.

The statement comes after NATO spokeswoman Oana Lungescu said that NATO will “continue to assess its presence in the Black Sea region”, where the alliance’s ships are carrying out routine patrols and drills.The NATO’s move follows the incident in the Kerch Strait, which took place last Sunday: two Ukrainian gunboats and a tugboat entered Russian territorial waters illegally as they tried to sail through a temporarily closed area in the strait. Their crews were detained by the Russian border service.

READ MORE: Pantsir-S Missile Battalion Enters Service in Crimea After Kerch Strait Incident

Commenting on the incident, Russian President Vladimir Putin described it as a provocation, which was likely related to the low approval rating of Ukrainian leader Petro Poroshenko ahead of the upcoming presidential election.

After the incident, the Ukrainian authorities on Monday introduced 30 day-long martial law in certain regions of the country.


US and Ukraine give Russia perfect opportunity to increase Crimea defenses

Ukraine must be desperate to pull a cheap stunt like this

2024
17

… from Press TV, Tehran

Update: Russian X-35 anti-ship missiles with 20km ranges have also been dispatched to the city of Kerch.

[ Editor’s Note: Ukraine sleepwalked into this silly game they are playing of claiming they are under imminent threat from Russia with the recent naval provocation. The GPS locations of the two parties ships were obviously recorded by everyone with the ability to do so.

The Ukrainian ships refusing to stop when ordered to do so was beyond stupid, but that said, that is what the Ukrainian leadership seems to be all about. Poroshenko is in weak shape for the coming election as the Ukie economy is down the drain with the oligarchs sucking the life blood out of the country.

Cooking up a little attention deflecting war to give the US and NATO the excuse to come in to “save” Ukraine is just another day at the office for the Unipolar crowd and its thug puppets.

On a more serious note there might be an effort in play to stretch Russia’s resources away from its Syria effort, where new generation S-57 fighter planes recently flew combat missions with report that they successfully showed they could not be detected by the US and Israeli radars. That rattled some cages.

This was just for show of course, as Moscow is not going to have enough of these planes for some time, for five years at least. But it is demonstrating its defensive capacity if forced to use it.

The US criminal involvement, with NATO and the EU, in the violent coup in Ukraine has been brushed under the rug as they expected. It might be time to rehash the whole thing and rub it in their faces to remind the public who was really responsible.

The fake story was that the “pro-Russian” former president had broken a promise to align with the West, which was a big lie of course. What he clearly wanted to do is get subsidized from both, as that was the only way for Ukraine to economically survive.

Russian had been giving Ukraine huge subsidies, including things like paying it Crimea basing rent 10 years in advances, and making sure Ukraine got a good chuck of the Russia military production budget.

Former president Victor Yanukovych wanted the West to match the Russian subsidies, but was given a choice of all or nothing. As we can see now, without the Russian subsidies Ukraine is down the tubes, and whose fault it that? Russia’s?

Do the Western spinmeisters think we are so stupid to buy that?… Jim W. Dean]

– First published … November 28, 2018 –

Russia has announced it will deploy new S-400 defense missile systems on the Crimean Peninsula amid a standoff initiated by Ukraine.

On Sunday, Russia’s naval forces intercepted and seized three Ukrainian vessels after they illegally entered Russian waters off the coast of Crimea in the Sea of Azov. The Kremlin has said the seizure of the ships was lawful because they were trespassing.

Still, that development set off an international dispute in which Kiev and its Western allies have accused Moscow of trying to assert dominion in the Sea of Azov.

Meanwhile, Ukraine has announced the application of martial law for 30 days in parts of the country following the seizure of the three vessels.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has voiced “serious concern” over Ukraine’s introduction of martial law, conveying the concern in a phone call to German Chancellor Angela Merkel, the Kremlin announced in a Tuesday statement.

The martial law gives Ukrainian officials the power to mobilize citizens with military experience, control the media, and impose restrictions on public rallies. That has in turn raised speculations that the tensions may spiral into an armed conflict.

In Ukraine’s east, the military has already been cracking down on ethnic Russians since 2014.

The RIA news agency reported that the new S-400 missile systems would be operational by the end of the year. Footage released on Wednesday showed the new missiles participating in drills at the Kapustin Yar test range in the Astrakhan region.

According to the Russian Defense Ministry, the S-400 systems practiced destroying low-flying, high-speed, highly maneuverable targets, relocation after completing combat missions, countering diversion groups, and moving through contaminated areas.