by Federico Dezzani
It is a centuries-old practice of the maritime powers to "isolate" their enemies with a curtain made of economic sanctions, military encirclement, political and ideological condemnation: in the past, "isolation" or "strangulation" was usually the source of war. The latest developments in Europe are therefore to be looked at with concern: in the United Kingdom, the clumsy poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal was exploited to further exacerbate diplomatic relations with Russia and to push "the allies" in the same direction, while in Slovakia Prime Minister Robert Fico, opposed to a total flattening of NATO policies, was overthrown in a dirty operation. The Atlantic block has now "ostracized" Moscow and, denying its rights, its interests and its legitimate sphere of influence, is preparing the ground for war.
Intelligence services and propaganda have prevailed over diplomacy
US President Donald Trump congratulated his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin on the victory in the presidential election. The conversation took place on the initiative of the American side and was generally constructive, Kremlin representatives said. This is the first conversation that the two leaders have had after the presidential election in RussiaThe conversation between US President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin took place on March 20, NBC News said with reference to a source in the White House. Putin's press secretary Dmitry Peskov confirmed the fact of the talks. "Donald Trump congratulated Vladimir Putin on winning the presidential election," the press service of the Kremlin specified. During the conversation, other topics were touched upon."The leaders spoke in favour of developing practical cooperation in various areas, including in matters of ensuring strategic stability and combating international terrorism. In particular, the importance of coordinated efforts to limit the arms race was emphasised," the Kremlin explained. In addition, Putin and Trump discussed the Syrian crisis, the situation in Ukraine and the state of affairs on the Korean Peninsula.The leaders also agreed to "develop further bilateral contacts taking into account changes in the leadership of the US Department of State." "In general, the conversation was constructive and businesslike and was focused on overcoming the problems in the Russian-American relations," the press service of the Kremlin said.This is the first conversation between the leaders of the two countries after Putin won the presidential election in Russia having gained more than 76 percent of vote. Putin has had several telephone conversations with other world leaders after the election. In particular, President Putin received congratulations from presidents of Azerbaijan (Ilham Aliyev), Armenia (Serzh Sargsyan), Belarus (Alexander Lukashenko), Kyrgyzstan (Sooronbai Jeenbekov), Tajikistan (Emomali Rahmon), Uzbekistan (Shavkat Mirziyoyev), Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi, President of China Xi Jinping, Prime Minister of Japan Shinzo Abe and Turkish President Recep Erdogan. On March 20, Putin accepted congratulations from the King of Jordan Abdullah II and the President of South Ossetia Anatoly Bibilov.Pravda.Ru
Russian diplomats have left the embassy building in London, as the local authorities ordered them to. Minibuses with departing embassy staff and their families members left the territory of the diplomatic mission to the tune of "Farewell of Slavianka", TASS reports.The diplomats went to the airport, from where they will fly to Russia on a special aircraft. Taking into consideration family members of the expelled diplomats, as many as 80 Russian citizens have left the UK in the midst of the scandal around the poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal. In the meantime, British diplomats in Moscow prepare to leave the Russian capital as well. The British Council has been wrapping up its work in Russia as well. The British Council has stopped working in Russian on account of the unsettled status of the organization.The British Consulate in St. Petersburg will not appear either as Russia has withdrawn the previously given consent for its opening.Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
Two days have passed since the presidential election in Russia, but even on March 20, Vladimir Putin has not received congratulations from his US counterpart Donald Trump. According to US officials, Trump does not even plan to call Putin. Vladimir Vasiliev, chief researcher at the Institute of the USA and Canada, told Pravda.Ru that such non-diplomatic behavior is connected with USA's solidarity with the UK on the case of Sergei Skripal. "If Trump congratulates Vladimir Putin now, he would then let down British Prime Minister Theresa May, who started the mess and does not know how to clean it now. Plus, this attitude shows how biased the political elite of the West can be about Russia," the expert told Pravda.Ru. Having started the case of Sergei Skripal, the West wanted to interfere in the Russian election and destabilize the situation in Russia to subsequently show influence on the outcome of elections and recognize them illegitimate. However, Trump and May have failed to attract Emmanuel Macron and Angela Merkel to their coalition, given the fact that the leaders of France and Germany have congratulated Putin. The sitting Russian administration can now outlive the Trump administration. According to Vladimir Vasilyev, the current state of affairs in the USA remains unstable. America has been alienating itself from the Republican Party lately, and chances to elect a new president in the USA in 2020 are high.Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
"Saudi Arabia is the oldest US ally in the Middle East, our relationship has a history of 80 years," Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, 33-year-old Mohammed bin Salman, told CBS on the eve of his three-day visit to the United States that began on March 19. The interview came as an attempt to restore confidence in Saudi Arabia's relations with the United States, which was undermined in the fall of 2016 after the arrival of Donald Trump to power.In 2016, during his election campaign, Trump shocked the royal family of Riyadh by saying that the United States would stop importing oil from Saudi Arabia. He fulfilled his threat: in September 2017, the volume of daily imports of Saudi oil to the US fell to 525,000 barrels of oil - three times as less than in 2007.The Saudi royal family took serious offence at Trump, and right after his victory in the US presidential election, Saudi Arabia accepted OPEC's proposal to reduce quotas for oil production - for the first time since 2008. The move marked the end of Barack Obama's secret collusion with the Saudi king concluded during his visit to Riyadh in April 2014, one month after the Crimean referendum on the reunification with Russia.According to Western media, after Obama's visit to Saudi Arabia, the latter flooded the world market with oil and forced Brent oil prices to collapse from $115 per barrel in mid-2014 to $59 by the end of the same year. Against the backdrop of this dramatic decline, the value of the US dollar against the Russian ruble doubled from 32 rubles in early 2014 to 64 rubles per dollar in mid-December 2014.The White House was happy with all that, but Trump's unexpected victory disrupted secret plans of the CIA to recreate another default in Russia, similarly to the one that shocked Russia in 1998. Saudi Arabia turned away from Trump towards Russia and agreed to reduce quotas for oil production. In April 2017, Federation Council Speaker Valentina Matvienko paid a visit to Riyadh, fascinated the royal dynasty and persuaded to deepen relations with Moscow both in the energy sector and in the military-technical sphere.Afterwards, in October 2017, Saudi King Salman Ben Abdel Aziz Al Saud became the first of the kings of Saudi Arabia to have paid a state visit to Moscow. Washington began to panic, because the rapprochement between Moscow and Riyadh indicated the failure of Trump's policy in the Persian Gulf.However, Saudi Prince Mohammed, having taken advantage of the serious illness of the 82-year-old king, took the reins of power in his own hands. The Crown Prince decided to restore the former allied relations with the United States. He came to Washington for the purpose. The visit is taking place against the backdrop of unprecedented aggravation of US-Russian relations, and the White House would like to renegotiate the 2014 oil agreement with Riyadh. Saudi Arabia will not take this up now: the deficit of its budget in 2017 reached an astronomical level of $86 billion, and another collapse in oil prices could take the national economy to default.However, the Saudis, experts suggest, may withdraw from the agreement with OPEC on lowering production quotas to resist the growing competition with US shale raw materials. After all, by the end of this year, the volume of oil production in the United States will reach 10.2 million barrels per day, which will make the US the world leader in oil production and force oil prices to decline gradually. Trump expects to bribe the young crown prince with a tempting offer: Washington will allocate $110 billion to Riyadh for the army modernisation program in return to a joint geopolitical strategy to turn oil into a weapon against Russia.The Trump administration would like to follow into the footsteps of Ronald Reagan, who had ruined the treasury of the Soviet Union with the help of two powerful moves. After Yuri Andropov came to power in 1982, Reagan strengthened the arms race and frightened the Kremlin with so-called "star wars" causing Andropov to order a sharp increase in the military budget. Additionally, Reagan entered into an oil conspiracy with Saudi Arabia and crushed global oil prices dramatically. In 1991, the state treasury of the USSR was emptied, and the country disintegrated.Aydin MehtiyevPravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
According to the Russian Defence Ministry. intercontinental ballistic missiles of Soviet production UR-100N UTTKh will be used as first carriers of hypersonic gliding units of Russia's state-of-the-art Avangard complex. "In the early 2000s, Ukraine supplied about 30 liquid fuel UR-100N UTTKh missiles as part of the regulation of the country's debt for Russia's natural gas. The missiles had been stored without fuel since the collapse of the USSR. Those were practically new, military-capable missiles that would last for several decades. Some of those missiles will become carriers for the first series of gliding hypersonic units within the upcoming several years," TASS wrote with reference to its source. Such units are to be installed on the heavy RS-28 Sarmat missile. The capacity of more than 2 megatons in TNT is enough to completely destroy "especially important targets."Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
The Central Electoral Commission readies to announce the final results of the Russian presidential election. The opposition and the West are extremely unhappy with the outcome.The official number is likely to set a record of all presidential campaigns that Russia has seen since 1991. According to preliminary data, as many as 56.4 million Russian people cast their votes for Vladimir Putin (76.7%) on March 18.Experts note that large cities, including Moscow and St. Petersburg that are usually oppositional, chose to support Putin this time. At the same time, Putin received 84.7% of support from foreign voters.As for the rest of Russia, there is no region in the whole country, where Putin would receive less than 60 percent. In such regions as Dagestan, Kabardino-Balkaria, Crimea, Tuva, Chechnya and Sevastopol, Putin received over 90 percent of support. The Russian opposition has thus failed to mobilise its own electorate. The head of the Political Expert Group, Konstantin Kalachev, noted that "the authorities have successfully attracted young people and middle-aged individuals to the elections, to make the voting a family matter," while the opposition has ruined all of its available prospects.Nevertheless, eleven organisations representing Russian-speaking communities in the United States called on the US Congress not to recognise the presidential election in the Russian Federation. London-based "Speak Louder!" movement also intends to make a similar appeal to the British government claiming that the Putin regime barred strong opposition politician Aleksei Navalny from the election, but ensured the registration of a number of little-known pseudo-opposition candidates."Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
Heralding the Putin era
Vladimir Putin's landsdile victory heralds a new era in geo-politics and underlines the utter idiocy of the Western political stance and that of its media
As predicted, Vladimir Putin was re-elected for the next six years with around 76 per cent of the vote, followed by the Leader of the Opposition, the Leader of the second most-voted party, Grudinin, of the Communist Party, with about 12 per cent. With 88 per cent of the votes accounted for by the two major parties, followed by Zhirinovsky's 5.6 per cent for the Liberal Democratic Party, we are well into the ninety percent range, so why this insistence in the West to talk about Navalny being the leader of the opposition? He was excluded for malpractice and even if he had run, what percentage of the vote would he have gained? He would have lost his deposit.
The coverage of the Russian presidential election in the Western press predictably reflects the poor knowledge of the Russian reality and the Russian mentality. Of course, Western journalists make their materials for their internal consumers, but their conclusions clearly indicate that the West has not come even a little bit closer to its ultimate goal to either destroy or remake Russia and its people. The first thing that catches the eye in all analytical articles is the assumption about Vladimir Putin overtaking Stalin in terms of political longevity. "Putin's victory will take his political dominance of Russia to nearly a quarter of a century, until 2024, by which time he will be 71. Only Soviet dictator Josef Stalin ruled for longer," Business Standard wrote. This assertion implicitly draws parallels with the Stalin era, which in the West is commonly referred to as "fascist." In addition, Putin is criticised for his "irrepressible" desire for power. Such an assumption may produce an impression on Western readers (although the growth of popularity of Mussolini, Salazar and Franco in corresponding countries breaks all records), but Russia has long learned to separate flies from meat chops and look at Stalin's figure dialectically. On the one hand, yes, he was a dictator, who killed too many, but on the other hand, he was a politician who turned the Soviet Union into an industrial power, who was intolerant of corruption, who attached first priority to Soviet family, culture and education.As for political longevity, it is the people of Russia who elect Putin, in contrast, for example, Germany, where Angela Merkel has been elected by a handful of elites for 20 years already. Which option is more democratic? The second thing that attracts one's attention about the coverage of the Russian presidential election in the West refers to opposition activist Aleksei Navalny. "Putin's main foe, opposition leader Alexei Navalny, was barred from the race because of a criminal conviction widely seen as politically motivated. Navalny has called for a boycott of the vote," FoxNews said. Putin responded very well to the above: "This, apparently, speaks about the preferences of the US administration in leaderships of other countries. It says whom they would like to see in the country's leadership ... In this sense, they've lost. It would be better if they kept silent," Putin said in January at a meeting with media executives. Indeed, the persona Navalny is clearly too far from being somewhere near Solzhenitsyn or Sakharov.Thirdly, Western journalists say that the Russian authorities used the administrative resource to ensure a high turnout. FoxNews quoted a 20-year-old woman named Daria Suslina and Yekaterinburg Mayor Yevgeny Roizman, who were terrified of the "pressure.""They are using everything: schools, kindergartens, hospitals - the battle for the turnout is unprecedented," said Roizman, one of the rare opposition politicians to hold a significant elected office," FoxNews reports. It is important to note here that the administrative resource did not call to vote for Putin - people were encourage to go and VOTE, and these are two totally different things. Fourthly, Western journalists buy into the idea that the reason for Putin's victory is his ability to play on the desire of the Russians to rebuff the West in Syria, in Ukraine and everywhere else. Moreover, they assert that this "tsarist chauvinism" is brought up on the ill interpretation of friendly intentions of the West to sow democracy in "bad countries." Western media rightly conclude, though, that British Prime Minister Theresa May, when trying to consolidate the British on the eve of Brexit and being unable to see a log in her own eye, played into Putin's hands with the case of Sergei Skripal.Responding to all the bullying is not the prime goal for the Russian authorities. The ultimate goal is to make people happy with their lives in Russia, editor of Atlantico.fr website Jean-Marc Sylvester wrote.Fifthly, a lot has been said about violations. Anton Troianovski wrote on pages of The Washington Post that the Russian authorities had arranged a massive spectacle from the Arctic to the ISS to show the scale of popular support without saying a word about numerous fakes that came from Navalny's supporters. The author gives an original interpretation to the voter turnout in the Crimea claiming that the Crimeans had been persuaded that without Putin the Crimea would fall into the abyss of war and gay marriage. Finally, the presidential election in Russia has convinced the West that the latter must not back down in front of such a "chauvinistic", "racist", "intolerant", etc. country as Russia. Australian television channel ABC in the person of Jennifer Mathers believes that Russia uses a wide range of hidden tools of intelligence and special services and neglects the rules of civilised behaviour. "If the West really is coming to the end of its patience with Russia, it could make Mr Putin's next six years as president a lot less comfortable," she wrote. Robert Kuttner at the Huffington Post expands on the idea and suggests cutting Russia off the banking system, prohibiting Russians from buying real estate in the West, restricting their entry to Western countries.Italian journalist and politician Giulietto Chiesa told Pravda.Ru that all attempts to put pressure on Russia and the Russians were doomed to failure, because the elections showed the unity of the Russians around their president. The Russophobic hysteria in the West is not going to abate in the coming days, months and years, the journalist believes."The West believes that it should break Russia, because Russia violates its rights. These are plans for many years to come. I'll tell you frankly: they need to be afraid of the strong Russia, and there is no other way to win," Chiesa said.What is troubling is that Western analysts do not understand why Trump came to power, and why Putin can still retains it. Today's middle-class Americans live worse than their parents lived, but in today's Russia, the younger generation lives better than their parents used to live. Above all, however, the Russians have always put the national idea above material well-being.Lyuba StepushovaPravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
Heralding the Putin era
Vladimir Putin's landsdile victory heralds a new era in geo-politics and underlines the utter idiocy of the Western political stance and that of its media
As predicted, Vladimir Putin was re-ected for the next six years with around 76 per cent of the vote, followed by the Leader of the Opposition, the Leader of the second most-voted party, Grudinin, of the Communist Party, with about 12 per cent. With 88 per cent of the votes accounted for by the two major parties, followed by Zhirinovsky's 5.6 per cent for the Liberal Democratic Party, we are well into the ninety percent range, so why this insistence in the West to talk about Navalny being the leader of the opposition? He was excluded for malpractice and even if he had run, what percentage of the vote would he have gained? He would have lost his deposit.
Putin's official spokesman Dmitry Peskov stated that the Kremlin had no intention to announce the aggravation of Russia's relations with the West on the whole. However, Moscow has been dealing with a flow of unfounded slander from Great Britain lately, he added. Peskov said that London would have to either present evidence or apologise."We understand, let's say, the Euro-Atlantic solidarity, but sooner or later, one will have to be held accountable for unfounded accusations. One will have to either substantiate them with evidence or make appropriate apologies," the Kremlin spokesman said. On March 17, the British Foreign Office responded to the decision of the Russian Foreign Ministry to take mirror measures and expel British diplomats from Russia. The UK wants to maintain the dialogue with Russia, British official said. London was expecting such a response from the Kremlin, but it does not mean that the dialogue between the two countries should be interrupted.On Saturday, March 17, the Russian Foreign Ministry decided to expel 23 British diplomats, close the Consulate General of the United Kingdom in St. Petersburg and terminate the activities of the British Council in Russia.Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
The US public debt has reached a new record and exceeded 21 trillion dollars. The share of the domestic debt makes up $5.6 trillion. The rest is held by private investors - individuals and legal entities - 15.3 trillion dollars.One of Donald Trump's pre-election promises was to eliminate the US public debt. The president insisted that his economic measures would solve this problem, but during one year of Trump's presidency, the US public debt has grown by more than a trillion dollars.Previous US President Barack Obama was also criticised for increasing the national debt of the United States. The US public debt grew from 10.6 trillion to 19.9 trillion dollars during Barack Obama's two presidential terms. The US budget deficit has been growing as well. In February, it reached a new record of 215 billion dollars.Pravda.Ru
Ukrainian pilot Vladislav Voloshin, who was suspected of attacking Boeing 777 of Malaysia Airlines in 2014, committed suicide.Voloshin died on the way to the hospital. Relatives of the pilot said that the deceased had been in a depressed and alarming state recently. Voloshin shot himself in the head while staying in his apartment with his family. As for the pilot's connection with the Malaysian Boeing disaster, officials with the Security Bureau of ukraine said that Voloshin had no flights the day when the tragedy occurred. The relatives of the deceased told local media that Voloshin was serving as the acting director of the Nikolaevsky airport, and the problems associated with the reconstruction of the airport were oppressing him. Bogdan Bezpalko, a member of the Council on Interethnic Relations under the President of Russia, a political scientist believes that "it's hard to get rid of the thought that Voloshin could be eliminated as one of the dangerous witnesses who could open the veil of secrecy over the MH17 disaster and thereby strengthen Russia's position." It is absolutely obvious that it was absolutely not advantageous for Russia to shoot down the aircraft, the specialist believes. "Most likely, this case will withdraw into the shadows. Quite possibly, some other people, who may shed light on this matter, will be "silenced" in one way or another. I think that we will learn the truth about the disaster in a very very long time," the expert said. Flight MH17 of Malaysian Airlines crashed over the Donbass on July 17, 2014, killing all 298 aboard. Most of the victims - 193 people - were nationals of the Netherlands.Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
Ukrainian MPs prepared a draft resolution on Ukraine's decision to recognise the presidential election in Russia illegitimate. Ukrainian MPs drafted a resolution on the statement of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine regarding Ukraine's non-recognition of the legitimacy of the presidential election in the Russian Federation, their results, legal consequences and, accordingly, acts of the person illegitimately elected to this post. The draft resolution was uploaded on the website of the Ukrainian parliament. The authors of the document are Verkhovna Rada deputies, members of the People's Front faction Maxim Burbak and Georgy Logvinsky.On March 18, Ukrainian security forces, as well as representatives of radical organisations did not let Russian citizens enter polling stations located in Russian diplomatic missions in Ukraine (in Kiev, Odessa, Kharkov and Lvov).For his part, President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko said that the official information on the election in the Crimea published in the Russian Federation was fabricated. According to preliminary data, Vladimir Putin won the election of the Russian president having gained 76.66% of the vote. In the Crimea, Putin received 92.15% of votes. More than 40 international observers from 20 countries of the world were accredited for the Crimea elections, including from Israel, Spain, Italy, Germany , Sweden, Cyprus, Norway, Denmark, Ukraine, France.Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
Vladimir Zhirinovsky, the leader of the Liberal and Democratic Party of Russia, suggested that the electoral model in Russia may go along the Chinese way, where the head of the country can get the right to remain at the helm for life.Commenting on the results of the presidential election on March 18, 2018, according to which Vladimir Putin has become the head of state again, Zhirinovsky suggested that a new power body could be created in Russia. "There will be the State Council - a collective body, at which the head , holding president's rights, will be elected at a meeting of the State Council, and the State Council will be formed from best governors, ministers, deputies ..."Vladimir Zhirinovsky participated in the presidential election for the sixth time. With 99% of the ballots processed, the leader of the Liberal and Democratic Party came third with 5.67% of the vote (4.1 million voters).Vladimir Putin received the support of 76.65% of voters (55.7 million people).Earlier, Putin answered a question of whether he was going to take part in the presidential election in Russia in 2030. "What you're saying is a bit funny. Let's count - Am I going to sit here till I turn 100? No!" Putin said. According to preliminary results of the voting, Vladimir Putin scored 76.67%, Pavel Grudinin - 11.79%, Vladimir Zhirinovsky - 5.66%, Ksenia Sobchak - 1.67%, Grigory Yavlinsky - 1.04%, Boris Titov - 0, 76%, Maxim Suraykin - 0.68%, Sergei Baburin - 0.65%.Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
Russian President Vladimir Putin, who won the presidential election in Russia with 76.67 percent of votes, said that he would reshuffle the government after the inauguration ceremony. According to him, "all changes in the government should be carried out by the sworn-in president, so now I will think about what should be done and how. I think that main changes will take place after the inauguration."Putin added that he would also pick the candidate for the position of the prime minister. "As for the chairman of the government, I think about it too, but I begin thinking about it substantively from today," he said.Putin stressed that Russia faces complex challenges that need to be addressed "not just as usual." "We need to make a breakthrough, it was not incident that I spoke about it in the address [to the Federal Assembly]. We can do it, we have all the reasons to believe so and achieve this result," the president said.Putin's victory at the election has set a personal record for him too. No other leader has ever had such support from the people in Russia's modern history. Putin's 76 percent accounts for more than 50 million votes. Pravda.RuRead article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
Acting Russian President Vladimir Putin is winning the presidential election in the country in a landslide victory. The election of the Russian President ended at 9:00 p.m. The top there includes Vladimir Putin, Pavel Grudinin of the Communist Party and Vladimir Zhirinovsky of the Liberal and Democratic Party. The results of other candidates are extremely low. Ksenia Sobchak comes fourth with 1.8 percent.With 25 percent of ballots processed, Putin has gained 72.53 percent of the vote, Grudinin - 15.44%, Zhirinovsky - 6.84%.Chairwoman of the Central Electoral Commission Ella Pamfilova said that the preliminary outcome of the election will be known by 2-3 a.m. The turnout at the elections as of 6:00 p.m. made up 60 percent. Thus, Vladimir Putin will most likely rule Russia for another six years.
Marielle Killing: An Imminent Military Coup in Brazil
Military intervention in Rio has been considered by the Army and President Temer, a "laboratory to Brazil"
The magazines the military in Rio is giving to children since the first days of intervention, with a cover showing a red monster (the "red danger") trying to attack a white and blond boy, protected by militaries, has everything to do with the assassination with four shots of the activist and councilwoman Marielle Franco (Socialism and Freedom Party) at 38 years old, on March 14 in the militarily occupied state of Rio de Janeiro.
Russia's Foreign Ministry announced retaliatory measures against British diplomats: 23 Britons are to be expelled from the Russian Federation. In addition, Russia closes the Consulate General of Britain in St. Petersburg and shuts down the British Council.In the morning of March 17, British Ambassador Laurie Bristow was summoned to the Foreign Ministry in Moscow, where he was informed of the measures. Britain suspects Russia of organising a chemical attack in Salisbury, as a result of which former double agent of the Russian Central Intelligence Directorate (GRU) Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia were poisoned. At the same time, the British authorities refuse to cooperate with Russia to investigate the accident, nor do they want to explain why the accident happened not too far from a secret chemical laboratory. Twenty-three British diplomats will have to leave Russian within a week. In addition, Russia is closing the British Consulate General in St. Petersburg. The timing for the move will be determined "in accordance with international norms," and employees will be given time to complete their work. To crown it all, Russia's retaliatory measures have affected the British Council - the agency responsible for the organisation of educational and cultural programs. The British Council in Russia will be closed "due to an uncertain legal status."Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on March 16 that Moscow would expel British diplomats. "At first, we, like polite people, will convey our answer to our British colleagues, who rush to grab a microphone to announce that Russia is to blame for everything," Lavrov said earlier.Pravda.Ru
Never underestimate the CIA. They are capable of anything. Brilliant. Strategic. Focused and deadly.
Many in the USA have come to realize this stealth organization does not work on the behalf of the USA but rather to its own ends. And, in this realization, comes a jaded view of both the CIA and the government it represents.
This realization may have begun with the assassination of John F. Kennedy. The Warren Commission, a congressional investigation was convened. The commission concluded there was a single lone shooter, a fringe outcast, Lee Harvey Oswald who acted alone in the assassination of the president. Many felt, in light of the facts, that the Warren Commission was a cover up of what really went down on November 22, 1963, in Houston, Texas.
Germany supported the UK in the endeavor to put Russia on the "dock" in the case of Sergei Skripal. Why such solidarity? The answer can be found in the possible destructive effect of people's diplomacy during the 2018 World Cup in Russia.Russia was waiting for Germany to react to the Anglo-Saxon common position in translating the case of the poisoning of Sergei Skripal into "Russia's aggression against Britain." Finally, Federal Minister of Defense of the Federal Republic of Germany Ursula von der Leyen (CDU) described the poisoning of the "former Russian double agent" in the UK as a serious blow to international security, Zeit Online publication said. "For the first time since the Second World War, such a terrible chemical weapon was used on European land," she said on Thursday, March 15, for ZDF Morgenmagazin.German political scientist Alexander Rahr told Pravda.Ru, the situation in Germany is changing for the worse for Russia speedily, because the UK "wants solidarity with its NATO and EU allies. If a serious journalist or a commentator tries to emphasize the correctness of what Russia says - that is one needs to prove everything first and then work together to investigate - then this person will be excluded from the media field immediately," the political scientist said in an interview with Pravda.Ru."I do not know how this can be stopped, but it seems that the goal of all this was set a few weeks ago: to ruin Russia's World Cup. These destructive forces are acting professionally and on the highest level," continued Alexander Rahr. Therefore, he said, "the ministers of the new German cabinet, and Chancellor Merkel herself, will side with Britain." "Just imagine if the Germans could side with Russia on that - they would be accused of splitting Europe. This is an absurd situation," the expert told Pravda.Ru. In this connection, a question arises: what is so terrible about the football championship for the West? The answer is simple. Hundreds of thousands of ordinary people from all over the world will come to Russia for the big sports events, where they will see friendly and hospitable people, the new innovative country, they will see several cities, including in the Crimea, Siberia and in the Far East. They will see that all the anti-Russian Western propaganda is just a storm in a glass. Such a development may indeed cause damage to the propaganda machine of the West. Policy-makers would then need to find excuses for large defense budgets. Many common people, after visiting Russia, may ask themselves interesting question. FIFA still distances itself from politics. What if London suggests holding the World Cup 2018 in the UK compensating FIFA for all losses? Lyuba StepushovaPravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
The British government tends to believe that it was President Putin, who personally ordered to use a chemical weapon on the territory of the UK. According to British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, the order to use chemical weapons on the territory of the kingdom, Russian special services were supposed to receive a personal order from the Russian president himself. "Our quarrel is with Putin's Kremlin, and with his decision - and we think it overwhelmingly likely that it was his decision - to direct the use of a nerve agent on the streets of the UK, on the streets of Europe for the first time since the Second World War," Johnson said in Uxbridge, leaving the Battle of Britain bunker during World War II which he visited together with his Polish counterpart Jacek Czaputowicz.The British Foreign Minister confirmed that the Novichok nerve gas was produced and stored in Russia. Johnson also said that London had nothing against the Russian people, "we do not get along with Putin and the Kremlin," he added. The Kremlin instantly responded to the new accusations from London. "Any reference to our president [in connection with this story] is nothing but shocking and unpardonable behavior from the point of view of diplomacy," Russian presidential press secretary Dmitry Peskov told Interfax.On March 15, Russian President Vladimir Putin discussed the state of affairs in the Russian-British relations with permanent members of the Russian Security Council. During the meeting, Russian officials expressed concerns about the position taken by Great Britain.Alexander Yakovenko, the Russian ambassador to London, explained why the British authorities are interested in accusing Russia of poisoning former GRU Colonel Sergei Skripal and his daughter.According to the diplomat, Britain has found itself in new circumstances, and the country is trying to find a new place in the Western society, RT reports.Yakovenko reminded that the UK was leaving the European Union, so all that the British have left is NATO. In an attempt to decide how to proceed, London has joined the anti-Russian campaign of how to contain Russia, the Russian Ambassador to London believes."That's why a new concept of state security emerged a year ago, in which Russia was called a serious enemy of Great Britain," Yakovenko said.In order to distract everyone from Brexit, the authorities need to show the public something that will help "switch attention.""This is an excellent occasion for launching the anti-Russian campaign, but this is a short-sighted position that the UK has taken, as they will have to explain what is behind this whole story in Salisbury and what they do in this secret chemical laboratory that is 12 km from the city," Yakovenko said. Pravda.Ru
US experts said that Russia's new underwater drone Status-6 can turn whole continents into lifeless territories.Stephen Schwartz, an expert in consequences of the use of nuclear weapons, said in an interview with Business Insider that the detonation of nuclear weapons near or on the surface of the earth leads to radioactive precipitation. According to him, the city, over which a nuclear explosion occurs, will be destroyed almost completely, but the level of radioactive contamination will be minimal.Status-6 underwater nuclear drone can produce a nuclear explosion in the water column and pollute everything around with radioactive cobalt-60. Thus, if a Status-6 explodes somewhere not far from Washington, radioactive precipitation is likely to fall in Canada and Mexico.All of the affected territories will be unsuitable for life. The article also says that US nuclear weapons are developed for pinpoint attacks on enemy's strategically important facilities with minimal collateral damage.Senior Research Fellow at the Heritage Foundation, Thomas Kallender, a retired US Navy officer, said that given the maximum speed of the Status-6 of more than 29 meters per second and the immersion depth of more than a kilometer, the Russian underwater drone becomes a difficult target for destruction. USA's Mark-48 torpedoes that develop the speed of 55 kilometers and can immerse for the depth of 800 meters, are not designed to destroy Status-6.Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
A terrible accident occurred on a ski lift in Gudauri, Georgia when a malfunctioning elevator accelerated to a high speed and started crushing passengers. Many passengers of the chairlift have suffered various injuries. Those who risked jumping off the elevator, injured their legs. However, those descending to the foot of the mountain have suffered much more serious injuries, because they would be crushed into piled up metal seats.According to eyewitnesses, the cableway could be stopped only a minute or two later. Rescuers arrived in seven minutes while eyewitnesses were doing their best to help the injured. It was said that the accident occurred because of the negligence of chairlift workers, who caused the cable monarchism to malfunction and start working in the opposite direction. It was also said that the mechanism turned into a meat grinder as a result of power outage. Eight people were taken to the hospital as a result of the accident. One of the injured is a pregnant woman, but she only complains of pain in the back. All the victims are conscious, their lives are out of danger. Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
It is highly unlikely that the nerve agent, which was used to poison former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in Salisbury on March 4, arrived in the UK from Russia in Yulia Skripal's suitcase, experts believe. Yulia Skripal arrived from Russia on March 3, and she and her father lost consciousness the following day. If there were a chemical agent in the suitcase, the two people would not be well for a whole day, Anton Utkin, an expert in chemical weapons, formerly a UN inspector to Iraq, told RBC. They would have fainted at home, right next to her suitcase. Yet, the two people were found unconscious in a park. To crown it all, a police officer, who did not inspect Yulia's suitcase, was exposed to the poison as well, the expert said. Former member of the UN Commission on Biological and Chemical Weapons Igor Nikulin also believes that the version about a container with Novichok nerve gas planted in the suitcase does not hold water. "Traces were found in the suitcase, as well as in several institutions in Salisbury, that is, if the container had been planted there, it should have given a leak, which looks implausible," he told RBC.According to the expert, Novichok nerve gas has a specific smell and yellowish color, and it is impossible not to notice it. "The only option is to transport the substance in a container or an activation device, when the ampoule could break inside to trigger the reaction. Yet, as long as Novichok was never in service, there are no precedents for the transportation of the substance, so no one has ever produced any carriers for it," Nikulin said.The experts also pointed out that Novichok could be synthesize not only in Russia. According to Nikulin, US special services could synthesize the poison formula successfully. During the 1990s, US special services disposed of an object near the city of Nukus in Uzbekistan, where the substance was synthesized. Technically, they could obtain samples, technological regulations and equipment.According to Anton Utkin, any experienced chemist who has necessary reagents can synthesize this substance.Earlier, The Telegraph wrote with reference to sources in British special services that the nerve agent, which poisoned Sergei Skripal, arrived in the UK in his daughter's suitcase unbeknownst to her. It is believed that malefactors could break into Yulia's apartment in Moscow and plant the nerve gas into her belongings. British investigators do not believe that the perpetrators, who conducted the chemical attack in Britain, delivered the nerve agent to the country on their own. It was also said that police officer Nick Bailey could have been exposed to poison in Sergei Skripal's home, rather than on the site where he was found with his daughter. Sergei Skripal and his daughter were poisoned on March 4. They remain in critical condition. Pravda.Ru
Europa League Round of 16: CSKA through
OK now let us see a campaign to exclude CSKA because someone said that someone saw someone doing something odd, no seriously, when someone was going somewhere strange on some date, don't know where or when but er...
C.I.A. Increases Drug Smuggling in Afghanistan To Fund Proxies All Over the World
1 Million Women and 100,000 Children Drug Addicts in Afghanistan. "Thanks to the U.S. invasion, Afghanistan is a narco-state today," says the Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan's representative.
At least one million women and 100,000 children are drug addicts in Afghanistan, said on Sunday (March 11) the head of the anti-drug department at the public health ministry of the Central Asian nation, Shahpor Yusuf, at an event at a drug rehabilitation center in Kabul to mark International Women's Day.
On Thursday, March 15, the US Treasury extended sanctions against Russia by adding 19 private individuals and five organizations to the black list. The new sanctions have affected the Internet Research Agency, better known in the media as the "troll factory," which the US has previously accused of attempts to interfere in the presidential election of the United States in 2016.The American administration has thus used the new "Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act" (CAATSA) to introduce restrictive measures against Russian citizens and organizations.In particular, the new sanctions have affected the employees of the Internet Research Agency, as well as the persons and organizations that had been sanctioned before, in particular the FSB and a number of senior GRU intelligence officials: first deputy head of the GRU Vladimir Alekseev, te deputy chief of the GRU Sergey Gizunov, the head of the GRU Igor Korobov, first deputy head of the GRU Igor Kostyukov. A few days ago, members of the US House of Representatives from the Democratic Party appealed to President Donald Trump to impose sanctions on Russia for interfering in the US elections. The appeal was signed by 140 deputies.Parliamentarians said that on January 29 the US administration was to apply sanctions "against those who cooperate with the Russian military and intelligence sectors." "You did not do it on time, and you also did not begin to punish those responsible for cyber attacks during the 2016 elections," they trumpeted Trump.On February 26, US Treasury Secretary Stephen Mnuchin said that the USA was working on new sanctions against Russia and noted that they would be introduced in the next 30 days. The CAATSA law was signed by US President Donald Trump on August 2, 2017. This document provides for tougher sanctions against Russia, Iran and the DPRK.Trump was opposed to the elaboration of the legal act, but the US Congress adopted the document with an overwhelming majority of votes. In December last year, US authorities also imposed sanctions against Russia in connection with hacker attacks during the election campaign in the United States.Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
In 2019, Russia will launch a mission to Mars. In addition, as part of another Moon exploration project, Russia scientists will try to land spacecraft on lunar poles, President Putin said. "We will conduct unmanned and then manned launches to explore outer space. There will be the lunar program and then the Mars exploration program. First off, and this is coming very soon, we are launching a mission to Mars in 2019," Putin said in Andrei Kondrashov's "Putin" documentary. According to Putin, Russia's new lunar program will differ from that of the Soviet Union. "Our specialists will try to make landings on the poles, because there is reason to believe that there can be water there," the Russian president said.Pravda.Ru
The official representative of the Russian Foreign Ministry, Maria Zakharova, responded to the recent remarks from the British Secretary of Defense, who offered Russia to "go away and shut up." Gavin Williamson, the Secretary of Defence, urged Russia to "go away and shut up" when asked how the Kremlin should respond to London'd decision to expel 23 Russian diplomats. "What we will do is we will look at how Russia responds to what we have done. It is absolutely atrocious and outrageous what Russia did in Salisbury. We have responded to that. "Frankly, Russia should go away and should shut up," the official said. "What else can the defense minister say if his country conceals circumstances of the use of chemical agents on its territory? London does not want to expose the available information, despite the Convention on the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. London has something to hide. The partners are worrying," Zakharova wrote on her Facebook page. Pravda.RuRead article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
In another episode of the new "Putin" documentary, the Russian president speaks about the previously unknown plans of terrorists who seized the Moscow Music Theater in 2002. According to Putin, the terrorists wanted to shoot their hostages on Red Square. The terrorists, who took hundreds of people hostage during the performance of Nord Ost musical at Moscow Music Theater in 2002, intended to go to Red Square by bus and start executing the hostages in front of the Kremlin walls. Putin said that the terrorists did not intend to release all the hostages, but wanted to shoot a part of them on Red Square. "The plan was to take a bus with hostages, go to Red Square and shoot them directly on Red Square, throw bodies on the street to intimidate the administration and special services. Of course, we could not let that happen," he said.Putin admitted that the gas that special services sprayed when storming the building did not work. However, it was impossible to delay the operation because the terrorists wanted to make the hostage crisis unfold in the heart of the capital. "The transportation of the hostages and their execution should have taken place the next morning. It was impossible to wait," Putin said.Putin admitted he personally made the decision to storm the building of the music theater. "Unfortunately, we lost a lot of people there. They were killed neither because of the shooting, nor because of the gas. Frankly, they died because of the inability to work under such circumstances. There were enough doses of the antidote, and one had to make injections, but they made two or three injections to some and no injections to others. We conducted an investigation, of course, very thoroughly. In those circumstances, it was difficult to punish someone, the people were risking their lives," Putin said. On October 23, 2002, a group of militants, led by Movsar Barayev, seized the music theater in Moscow's Dubrovka, where Nord-Ost musical was showing. Forty terrorists took more than 900 people hostage - spectators and actors. Three days later, the theater was stormed. The hostage crisis claimed the lives of about 130 people. Relatives of the victims and some of the survivors say that the reason for the large death toll was the sleeping gas. Pravda.Ru
Moscow will expel British diplomats in response to the recent decision of the British government to expel 23 Russian diplomats from the UK, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said. Answering the question about the timing, Lavrov said: "Soon."Earlier on March 15, official representative of the Russian Ministry for Foreign Affairs, Maria Zakharova, said that Moscow was hoping to start an "active dialogue" with London, but received l meaningless formal replies to all inquiries. Moscow is working on responsive measures, they are under development, and they will be announced in the near future, she added. On March 14, British Prime Minister Theresa May announced that because of the chemical attack committed against former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in Salisbury, 23 Russian diplomats would have to leave the territory of the United Kingdom. In her speech, May blamed Russia for a purposeful chemical attack on the territory of a sovereign state, which severely affected several British citizens. It is worthy of note that the first policeman, who arrived at the site of the accident, Nick Bailey, still remains in a critical condition.Pravda.Ru
On March 15, an incident occurred to an An-12 aircraft in Yakutia. The cargo hatch came off the aircraft during takeoff. The An-12 was carrying nine tons of gold. Most of the cargo fell out of the aircraft as a result of the incident. Gold bullion were scattered on the airfield. For the time being, 172 gold billions, each weighing 20 kilos, have been recovered.The gold that the cargo plane was carrying on board was evaluated at 21 billion 600 million rubles ($378 million). The crew decided to return to Yakutsk immediately after the incident. The aircraft landed successfully. Airport employees inspected the aircraft before departure and found it completely serviceable.
The Investigative Committee of Russia launched investigation into the incident with the An-12 plane in Yakutia."When ascending, the cargo ramp was damaged after the cargo went adrift. The plane was carrying the concentrate containing precious metal, in bars weighing about 9.3 tonnes. The cargo belongs to the Chukotka Mining and Geological Company," officials with the Investigative Committee said.
Photos taken from social networksPravda.RuRead article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
Champions: Bayern and Barça
Bayern eliminated Besiktas, who fought hard and gave the best they could but in the world of international soccer these days there are only Goliaths, no Davids. In the other game, Barça blew away Chelsea 2-0.
Besiktas 1 Bayern 3 First Leg 0-5 Aggregate 1-8
Ultimatum to Putin: where does May want to go?
By Maurizio Blondet
The real and disturbing question is: where does Theresa May want to go, explicitly accusing Russia of the poisoning of her double agent Sergei Skripal? And with these tones: she gave a 36-hour ultimatum to the Russian ambassador "to explain how the [Russian] State has developed the nerve agent used in Salisbury, or will follow serious measures", for this "illegal use of force in the territory of the United Kingdom".
Russia and the United States are entering the arms race of a new type - the technological arms race. The new race will focus on a warfare in outer space, and the 1967 treaty is not an obstacle for it, military expert Sergei Sudakov believes. It took the US two weeks to give an answer to Putin's demonstration of Russia's state-of-the-art weapons, such as, for example, the Avangard platform, which strikes targets on the ground from outer space bypassing air defence systems. On March 13, Donald Trump, speaking before soldiers in California, announced the beginning of the creation of space forces within US Armed Forces.Professor of the Academy of Military Sciences, political scientist, Americanist and candidate of political sciences Sergei Sudakov told Pravda.Ru that these days, the one who takes the lead in space, takes the lead on the ground. Space weapons that make all means of conventional air defences pointless, is a breakthrough, which, as the political scientist believes, forms the trend of the development of modern weapons for 10-15 years to come. This time, however, Russia is the leader, and the US only has to catch up. "It will be a new arms race, not a quantitative one, but a technology-oriented race, and the main question is, how much every country will have to pay for innovations. Russia's innovations in the aerospace sector cost a lot less than those of the United States," said Sergey Sudakov in an interview with Pravda.Ru.The expert believes that the treaty from 1967, signed by the USSR, the USA and Great Britain prohibiting the deployment of any weapons of mass destruction in outer space refers to nuclear weapons that will be staying there in a standby mode until a strike is required." "One will have to develop special mechanisms to protect satellites and data transfer channels, because it is impossible to control troops when there is no connection with satellites, and the army is simply blind and deaf," Sergei Sudakov told Pravda.Ru. The above-mentioned treaty from 1967, which unites more than 100 countries, binds its members not to deploy weapons of mass destruction in space. Yet, the treaty does not regulate the deployment of conventional weapons in space. The parties to the treaty also agreed not to test weapons, conduct military exercises, build military bases on celestial bodies, such as planets, planetoids, asteroids.Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
British Prime Minister Theresa May said that the UK would expel 23 Russian diplomats in connection with the case of the poisoning of Sergei Skripal. The diplomats will have to leave the UK within a week, May said. She also announced her decision to suspend all top level ties with the Russian Federation. 'Under the Vienna Convention the United kingdom will now expel 23 Russian diplomats who have been identified as undeclared intelligence officers - they have just one week to leave."They have treated the use of this poison with sarcasm and disdain...There is no other conclusion other than that the Russian state was responsible for the attempted assassination of Sergei Skripal and his daughter," Theresa May said. This will be the single biggest expulsion in over 30 years and it reflects the fact this is not the first time that the Russian state has acted against our country."Through these expulsions we will fundamentally degrade Russian intelligence capability in the UK for years to come. And if they seek to rebuild it we will prevent them from doing so," she added.
"We will also table a government amendment to the Sanctions Bill to strengthen our powers to impose sanctions in response to the violation of human rights," she said.
"In doing so we will play our part in the international effort to punish those responsible for the sorts of abuses suffered by Sergei Magnitsky."
The Skripal Affair and skullduggery
Unacceptable to poison people in public places? Sure. Unacceptable to point the finger without the proof? Also. Stupid to give a 24-hour time limit for a reply?
The entire Skripal affair stinks. First off, nobody likes to see people being poisoned or murdered, much less in public places, much less an innocent young lady and much less a policeman going about his work. Much less also, seeing people living their lives in a sleepy countryside city of rural England terrified as all hell breaks loose among them and with the Portland Down bio and chemical weapons factory around nine miles out of town.
British Prime Minister Theresa May is going to make an important announcement on March 14. It is believed that May will announce a decision to expel Russian diplomats from the UK, Sky News reports with reference to its source. The number of Russian diplomats who will have to leave the United Kingdom is not going to be as large as it was in 1971, but it will be large enough, the publication said. Theresa May's decision may thus come as a response to Russia's inaction regarding the ultimatum that May had delivered to Russia during her recent speech at the parliament. May, speaking about Russia's possible involvement in the poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal, said that Russia would have 24 hours to explain the incident. Soon afterwards, top Russian politicians, including Foreign Ministry representative Maria Zakharova, mocked May's ultimatum to Russia. "No person can stand up in the parliament of their country and say: "I give Russia 24 hours." What kind of talking is it at all?" Zakharova said adding that British Prime Minister Theresa May made the statement in "London, the capital of a nuclear power.""Whom do they give 24 hours? For what?" Russian Foreign Ministry representative said alluding to Russia's nuclear arsenal. According to Putin's official spokesperson Dmitry Peskov, Russia has nothing to do with the incident with Sergei Skripal, who was exposed to a nerve agent in the UK"Moscow's position is well known, Moscow's position was conveyed through diplomatic channels to London: Moscow has nothing to do with the incident that took place in the UK," the Kremlin spokesman said. "Moscow does not accept absolutely unsubstantiated allegations nor does it accept the language of ultimatums," he added. "At the same time, we remain open to cooperation in investigating the causes of this incident, but, unfortunately, we do not see reciprocity on the part of the British in this," Putin's press secretary stated.Pravda.Ru
In the US, the head of the laboratory at Dartmouth College, Professor Hany Farid, said that fake videos with world leaders in them could start a nuclear war. According to the professor, anyone can use deepfake algorithm to make a video of any content, CBS reports.One can take any video at all, while the neural network simply "pastes" the image of any person into the video at the will of the creator. It is also possible to make voices that sound like the voices of real people and even their facial expressions. "I think the nightmare situation is a fake video of a politician saying, 'I have launched nuclear weapons against a country,' Farid said.The Sun published several before-and-after videos of comedians impersonating presidents Trump and Putin. The faces of the two presidents, when superimposed on the faces of the actors, look surprisingly real. Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
Rian Johnson, the director of "Star Wars: The Last Jedi," said that Russian bots tried to influence the plot of the film. In the documentary film "The Director and the Jedi" Johnson said that at some point in time he was attacked by Russian bots on Twitter, who wanted to control certain parts of the script."It's amazing. There's a coordinated effort by these Russian accounts. Hundreds of them," Johnson said during a production meeting referring to the posts, in which he was asked not to kill General Hux in the new trilogy.General Hux, played by Domhnall Gleeson, is the commander of "Starkiller" space base. He was in charge of the operation to destroy the New Republic.Pravda.RuRead article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
World-famous British physicist Stephen Hawking died at the age of 77. Mankind will always remember the outstanding scientist for his unbreakable and indestructible strength that he always had inside himself. Hawking, even though he looked extremely bizarre in his wheel chair, was living a miraculous life inside his crippled body, and he always kept a good sense of humour. Stephen Hawking is known not only for his cosmic theories. The scientist has made a number of very interesting predictions about the future of the world. Below are a few of them. Earth will soon turn into Venus because of the global warming phenomenon with atmosphere temperatures reaching +250 degrees Celsius and sulphuric acid rains.Stephen Hawking believed that governments should prohibit the creation of combat robots already now due to the threat of uncontrolled proliferation of autonomous weapons.The creation of artificial intelligence will be the most important discovery in the history of mankind. It may also be the last scientific breakthrough for man. As for contacts with extraterrestrial civilisations, Hawking said that a contact with aliens would be similar to the experience that the Indians had to go through after Columbus discovered America. Chances are high for mankind to disappear as a result of a nuclear war or because of genetically modified viruses. The only chance for mankind to survive, Hawking said, is to leave our fragile planet within the upcoming 1,000 years. "I believe alien life is quite common in the universe, although intelligent life is less so. Some say it has yet to appear on planet Earth.""While physics and mathematics may tell us how the universe began, they are not much use in predicting human behavior because there are far too many equations to solve. I'm no better than anyone else at understanding what makes people tick, particularly women.""Look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Try to make sense of what you see, and wonder about what makes the universe exist. Be curious.""Intelligence is the ability to adapt to change."
Turks and Greeks are two people that lived side by side on the same lands for centuries; they mixed, bonded ad were tied to each other with many historical and cultural bonds. The natural outcome of this long co-existence should have been a close bond, fraternity and friendship, which is the case in many similar examples around the world. However, things have usually been the opposite for these countries.
A deeper analysis reveals that the reasons behind this strange outcome have been certain circles that didn't consider the development of this friendship and alliance fit for their interests and plans. It is now a familiar habit for the said circles to step in and replay disastrous scenarios whenever an opportunity for Turkish-Greek friendship rises. The same circles have long taken every opportunity to sow the seeds of discord between the two countries, and to this end, have fueled artificial crises and conflicts, and even managed to bring the two countries to the brink of war for completely irrational and insignificant reasons.
During WWI, the plots of these secretive structures against the two countries became more prominent because they believed a Turkish-Greek alliance dangerous for their plans of domination and exploitation in the Middle East. Furthermore, continuation of the caliphate, a title preserved by the Ottoman Empire, didn't sit well with Britain, which had been making plans of dominance over the Middle East and the Islamic countries, as well as their natural resources and oil reserves.
Champions: Sevilla and Roma march on
Roma eliminate Shakhtar Donetsk, Sevilla send Manchester United out of the competition
International study indicates ways to mitigate the effects of climate change on agriculture
Extreme weather events are going to be more frequent and longer lasting, and farmers will have to adapt, finding new forms of agricultural and agroforestry management
Extreme weather events "are going to be more frequent and longer lasting, and farmers will have to adapt, finding new forms of agricultural and agroforestry management in order to make this sector more resilient to climate change," says scientist José Paulo Sousa, from the Center for Functional Ecology of the Faculty of Science and Technology of the University of Coimbra (FCTUC), coordinator of a team of Portuguese researchers participating in the international study ECOSERVE, which is evaluating the effects of climate change on soil biological processes.
Donald Trump has turned his cards over. From ambiguous allusions of US military intervention in the Syrian crisis, the 45th US President has moved on to overt blackmail.On Monday, March 12, he instructed US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley to address a UN Security Council meeting with a threatening, ultimatum-like statement: if the UN is unable to achieve a ceasefire in Eastern Ghouta near Damascus, the USA will be prepared to strike a military blow on Syria. Haley recalled that in April 2017, the United States struck a missile blow on Ash Shayrat air base of Syrian government forces in the province of Homs. That attack, she said, came in response to a chemical attack in the Syrian city of Khan Shaykhun.The US delegation to the UN distributed a draft resolution demanding that military operations in Damascus and its suburbs be stopped. Naturally, the USA addressed the requirement to Moscow and Damascus, because Syrian government troops conduct military operations with Russia's support to oust pro-American terrorists from Eastern Ghouta.Washington seems to be worried because civilians of Eastern Ghouta began leaving the area for the first time in a long time thus giving a hope for the situation to improve. The US administration does not need such a development, because the United States intends to use 400,000 civilians, who, according to the UN, still remain in Eastern Ghouta as hostages for guerrilla operations against Assad's troops.The essence of Trump's ultimatum to Putin is this: the United States submitted a draft resolution to the UN Security Council demanding a 30-day truce in Damascus and its suburb of Eastern Ghouta. Even if Russia votes for this resolution, it does not mean that US-backed militants in the province of Damascus will honour the truce.In this case, Trump will accuse Assad of violating the cease-fire and using chemical weapons. He will then give an order to inflict a new massive blow on Syria. This time, however, the US missile strike will target not only military facilities of the Syrian army, but also government buildings in Damascus, including the residence of Bashar Assad in the Syrian capital. "Over the past two weeks, the Russian and Syrian regimes have been busy labeling every opposition group in Eastern Ghouta a terrorist group," Haley said, thus suggesting that the United States would continue supplying weapons to militants who use the population of Eastern Ghouta as a human shield.Rex Tillerson's recent demonstrative refusal to meet with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov in Addis Ababa became a signal that Washington sent to Moscow: the Trump administration clearly does not like the status quo in Syria, and the USA may exacerbate the crisis, even if it may entail a clash of Russian and US fighter jets in the sky over Syria.It appears that Trump ignores Russia's military presence in Syria, even despite the recent deployment of four Su-57 multi-purpose fifth generation fighters there. A new report that Trump has recently received from Chief of the Central Command of the US Armed Forces (CENTCOM), General Joseph Votel, indicates that the United States has lost the initiative in Syria, where, according to the author, Russian anti-aircraft missile forces threaten the US Air Force in the region.The report also said that Iran has been gradually expanding its zone of influence in the region hiding behind Russia's military support and relying on Hezbollah. In addition, Tehran supports the actions of Shiite Houthis in Yemen, which, as the report says, aggravates the civil war in Yemen and threatens Saudi Arabia and the UAE. Iran's ultimate goal is to create an arc of influence, or the Shiite crescent, across the entire Middle East.Israel is joining the dangerous game of saber-rattling. Israel has recently held large-scale military exercises with the US. "Israel will do everything possible to prevent the creation of the Shiite corridor between Iran and Syria," Israeli Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman stated.It is highly likely that the IDF may strike Iran's military facilities in Syria. If Tehran responds to such a challenge with a missile strike of its own, a big war between Tel Aviv and Tehran may break out. If this happens, the civil war in Syria will go into the background.Aydin MehtiyevPravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
US President Donald Trump fired Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.CIA Director Mike Pompeo is expected to take Tillerson's position as the new US Secretary of State, news agencies report. According to Trump, Pompeo will be best for the job."I am proud to nominate the Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, Mike Pompeo, to be our new Secretary of State," Trump said. "Mike graduated first in his class at West Point, served with distinction in the U.S. Army, and graduated with Honors from Harvard Law School. He went on to serve in the U.S. House of Representatives with a proven record of working across the aisle," Donald Trump said. Trump thanked Tillerson for his service, and named the new CIA chief."Gina Haspel, the Deputy Director of the CIA, will be nominated to replace Director Pompeo and she will be the CIA's first-ever female director, a historic milestone. Mike and Gina have worked together for more than a year, and have developed a great mutual respect," Trump added. Pompeo had been chairing the CIA since January 2017. He has repeatedly stated that Russia interfered in the election of the US president, and claimed that Russian special services may show influence on the outcome of the mid-term elections to Congress in the fall of 2018.Rex Tillerson, the head of ExxonMobil oil corporation, was appointed for the post of the US Secretary of State in December 2016. In December 2017, the president called fake news about the retirement of Rex Tillerson from the post. Trump then said that Tillerson was not leaving the job, although they had disagreements on certain issues. Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
Former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia, who were poisoned in Salisbury with a neural-paralytic substance of the Novichok type, will never be able to recover completely if they manage to stay alive, Soviet chemist Vil Mirzayanov, who lives in the US, said. Mirzayanov is considered to be one of the creators of the poisonous substance, The Telegraph wrote.According to the chemist, Novichok substances are at least 10 times more powerful than any other nerve-paralytic chemicals.The scientist believes that Skripal and his daughter are hopeless. The two still remain in a coma, whereas as many as 21 people have requested medical assistance as a result of the incident in Salisbury. There is no official information about poisoning substances of the Novichok family available in open sources. However, according to Vil Mirzayanov, it is possible to create one of its variants with the help of conventional organophosphate compounds manufactured at chemical plants for the production of fertilisers or pesticides. This, as the scientist noted, makes it possible to covertly create chemical weapons bypassing the convention on their prohibition. It is also believed that Novichok poisons are 5-10 times more toxic that VX poison that was used to kill a close relative of Kim Jong-un. Meanwhile, Russian Senator Igor Morozov told RIA Novosti that Russia ceased the production of Novichok nerve gas a long time ago and destroyed all of its reserves. According to him, the production was stopped during the 1990s, whereas the last kilogram of the substance was destroyed in September 2017. "This was done in accordance with international agreements under the supervision of international observers of the OPCW," Morozov said.Pravda.Ru
The US military may use the provocation of terrorists in Syria's Eastern Ghouta province as an excuse to strike government quarters in Damascus.According to the Chief of the General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces, Valery Gerasimov, Russia had reliable information about the efforts that terrorists have been taking recently to stage the use of chemical weapons by Syrian government troops against civilians."For this purpose, a crowd of women, children and elderly people has been collected in several areas of Eastern Ghouta to imitate victims of a chemical attack," Gerasimov said. White Helmets activists and film crews with satellite video broadcast equipment are already in place, the official added. "This is confirmed by the discovery of a laboratory for the production of chemical weapons in the village of Aftriss that has been liberated from terrorists," Gerasimov stressed.According to the Russian general, after the provocation, the United States will accuse Damascus of using chemical weapons and present "evidence" of the mass death of civilians through the fault of the Syrian government and the Russian leadership that supports it.The Russian Defense Ministry is ready to take counter measures in the event of a US attack on Damascus, if there is a threat to the Russian military, Gerasimov added. The United States does not exclude striking Syria, if the UN is unable to cease hostilities in Eastern Ghouta. Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov stated that Russia would not respond to London's ultimatum in connection with the "Skripal case" until British services give Russia access to the substance that had been used to poison the former Russian spy and his daughter Yulia."Before delivering ultimatums - to provide a report to the British government within 24 hours - they should rather comply with their own obligations under the international law, in this case the convention on the prohibition of chemical weapons," Lavrov explained.Speaking at a press conference in Moscow, Lavrov said that Russia was not to blame for what had happened to Skripal. Russia is ready to cooperate in accordance with the Convention on the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, "if the United Kingdom bothers to fulfil its own international legal obligations under this document ".Lavrov also added that Russia officially demanded London give her access to all materials on the case of Sergei Skripal, but the British side refused.According to Lavrov, given that one of the victims - Yulia Skripal - is a Russian citizen, Russia's requirement is legitimate.British Prime Minister Theresa May said in her speech earlier that the attack on the former spy was either an act of the Russian state against Britain, or the Russian government had lost control over the nerve agent.Pravda.RuRead article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
British Prime Minister Theresa May, speaking before the parliament on Monday, accused Russia of attempted assassination of former colonel of the Central Intelligence Directorate (known for the Russian initials as GRU), Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia.According to May, experts at the defence science and technical laboratory in Porton Down identified the poison as a combat nerve agent of the "Novichok" class that Russia can allegedly develop to this day. May also said that the British authorities assume that Russia sees certain defectors as "justified targets for murder."May emphasised that Russia would have time till Tuesday evening to provide detailed and compelling explanations, otherwise London will regard the incident as a military aggression against the United Kingdom.What Moscow has to say in responseThe accusations against Russia of the poisoning of former GRU colonel Sergey Skripal and his daughter Yulia in Britain are provocative in nature and are aimed, in particular, to undermine confidence in Russia as the host of the World Cup 2018, a message posted on the website of the Russian Foreign Ministry said."We have repeatedly warned before that on the eve of the World Cup in Russia, Western media would launch a full-scale media campaign to discredit Russia as the host of the sports event.""As we expected, the British are particularly active. They can not forgive Russia for the fact that it was our country that got the right to host the 2018 World Cup." The British media call the general public to boycott the upcoming World Cup, and such suggestions come not only from journalists, but also from officials, particularly from Foreign Minister Boris Johnson and Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the House of Commons, Tom Tugendhat. All this is based on the poisoning of Skripal, even though the investigation into the incident has not even started yet," representatives for the Russian Foreign Ministry said. "This, however, has not stopped British politicians from concluding that Russia was involved in the case, but they want to punish Russia now, by, for example, refusing to go to the World Cup. At the same time, though, they have not decided who should boycott the event - whether it should be members of the royal family, officials or the national football team of England? We want to say it again that such bogus stories that flame anti-Russian hysteria can only complicate the relations between our countries and cause damage to the world of sports," Russian officials also said. Maria Zakharova, an official spokesperson for the Russian Foreign Ministry, said that Theresa May's speech at the parliament was a circus show. "This is a circus show at the British parliament. The conclusion is obvious: another media and political campaign based on provocation. Before they tell new fairytales, let someone in the kingdom report about the outcomes of the old ones - about Litvinenko, Berezovsky, Perepilichny and many others, who died mysterious deaths in Britain. The Grimpen Mire still has many secrets untold," Zakharova said. A member of the Federation Council, a veteran of the Foreign Intelligence Service, Igor Morozov, did not rule out the severance of diplomatic relations between Russia and the UK."There are few precedents of similar political pressure and blackmail, and all of them ended with either termination of diplomatic ties or their restriction in the form of recall of ambassadors," Morozov said, RIA Novosti reports."The British should know that they will come across a very tough response from Russia, and our position will be restrained, adequate, but tough. We will see what the London move will be before we respond to this challenge accordingly," the senator said.What did Washington say on the subject?White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders did not answer a question about Russia's alleged involvement in the poisoning of Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in the UK. She only said that Britain was investigating the incident, which Sanders called "reckless." "The attack was reckless, indiscriminate, and irresponsible," Sanders said at the daily White House press briefing. On March 4, former Colonel GRU Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia were hospitalised in critical condition in the city of Salisbury. Skripal was granted asylum in Britain after Russia and the UK exchanged intelligence officers in 2010.It is worthy of note that the leaders of the intelligence services stick to the unwritten code of immunity in relation to disclosed agents's family members.Nikolai Kovalev, former chief of the Federal Security Bureau, said that there are such verbal agreements and unwritten laws that virtually all intelligence services of the world follow indeed. "Intelligence officer's family is inviolable, because if one starts acting through one's wife or children, this process will become irreversible and it can turn into blood feud," Kovalev said. The same principles apply to the agents who have been exchanged, Kovalev added. "Sergei Skripal was convicted 12 years ago, and it just so happens that Russia had to wait for 12 years to do it on the eve of the presidential election. Turn the logic on, guys. In this case, the logic is simply missing," said Kovalev.Pravda.RuRead article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
Oleg Tabakov, one of Russia's most revered and recognisable artists, died in Moscow on March 12 at age 82. Tabakov had spent the past few months at hospital. It was reported that Tabakov was sick with pneumonia. Later it became known that he was connected to the artificial respiration apparatus, but could not speak while maintaining orientation in space and time.After the New Year, it was reported that Tabakov was spending most of time in a state of artificial coma.Oleg Tabakov was a founder of one of Moscow's best-known theatres - the Sovremennik Theatre. He also served as the head of the Tabakerka Theatre, the Chekhov Moscow Art Theatre, and the rector of the Moscow Art Theatre School from 1986 to 2000.Literally every Russian, and especially Soviet person, knows Tabakov for his remarkable performances in such masterpieces of Soviet cinematography as "Seventeen Moments of Spring", "War and Peace", "D'Artagnan and the Three Musketeers", "A Few Days from the Life of Oblomov", "Man from the Boulevard of the Capuchins" and many others. The artist is also celebrated in the country for his outstanding theatrical works. All Russian children know Oleg Tabakov as the voice of cartoon character Kot Matroskin (Matroskin Cat) from "Prostokvashino" cartoon series.Tabakov was born on August 18, 1936 into a family of doctors. After leaving school, Tabakov decided to go to Moscow to study theatrical arts. On March 12, Oleg Pavlovich Tabakov suffered a heart attack. He died at 4:15 pm.The same day, March 12, the world lost another famed artist, albeit from the world of fashion. French couturier Hubert de Givenchy died at the age of 91, RFI radio reported. The fashion designer was born in 1927. He studied at the School of Fine Arts in Paris. At the age of 25 he founded his own fashion house Givenchy, which still bears his name. The very first collection of the young fashion artist was a huge success.Givenchy's ideal of beauty and femininity was Audrey Hepburn. Their creative union lasted for almost 40 years. The couturier created his first perfume - L'Interdit - for Hepburn as well.The first lady of the United States and fashion trendsetter Jacqueline Kennedy was another face of the Givenchy fashion house.According to the communique distributed in the French media, Hubert de Givenchy died on March 10 while sleeping. It was said that "instead of flowers and wreaths, Givenchy would prefer a donation to UNICEF."Pravda.Ru
Chief researcher at the Institute of Russian History of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Vasily Khristoforov, said that the Americans incidentally proved Hitler's suicide 18 years ago. The evidence of Adolf Hitler's suicide was a previously unknown X-ray image, RIA Novosti said.During those years, an American professor arrived in Central Archives of the Federal Security Bureau, Khristoforov said. The professor wanted to see fragments of Hitler's jaw that were stored in the archives. All of a sudden, very unexpectedly for the archive staff, the professor pulled out an X-ray photograph of Hitler's jaw that was made during his lifetime. The photo had been kept in strict secrecy in the archives of American special services since the end of WWII. The American carefully compared the fragments of the jaw and the X-ray photo and confirmed that everything was congruent. "If the results had not coincided, I think it would have caused quite a commotion. He left, and the information about the visit did not appear anywhere," Khristoforov said.The Russian scientist considers the theory about Hitler's escape to Latin America a hoax. After all, there is no direct evidence to this theory at all. According to CIA's data, Adolf Hitler survived WWII and was even photographed in Colombia in 1954.Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
The Pentagon has not expressed much concern about the new Russian nuclear weapons, because the Americans are not ready yet to draw conclusions and negotiate. They would rather defeat the Russian in Hollywood films. On Sunday, March 11, the Russian Defence Ministry showed a video of the test of the Kinzhal (Dagger) hypersonic missile system. However, US officials are not very concerned about Russia's new weapons, CNN said.Pentagon chief James Mattis said that he did not see any changes in Russia's military potential. According to him, the announcements that Putin made during his Address to the Federal Assembly did not come as news to him because it those arms systems were not news at all. "They do no impact any need on our side for a change in our deterrent posture, which would be certainly an indication I registered this assessment with something that was changing," Mattis said wondering how much time and money the Russians would be willing to invest in the arms race with themselves. James Mattis also assumed that it would be up to the Russian people to carry the burden of all those developments. President of the St. Petersburg Club of Conflictologists, Colonel Boris Podoprigora, told Pravda.Ru, that "the American technical intelligence was aware of Russia's new developments." "The absence of refutations suggests that they are largely in possession of the situation that was outlined by Vladimir Putin in his speech and then in the interview with an American journalist," the military expert said in an interview with Pravda.Ru.Yet, Washington, in his opinion, is not ready for negotiations, "because the US administration and the State Department are outside the power field, and it is the US Congress that actually performs all functions of the US foreign policy department now." In this situation, it is very difficult to formulate a unified approach, because the Congress is "just talking, not decision-making.""What is the point of talking to Tillerson, for example, who warns us every time that his judgments are of a largely limited, preliminary and notifying nature?" Boris Podoprigora said in an interview with Pravda.Ru. "It's hard for me to say to which extent the US military-industrial complex is ready to counter challenges that come from Moscow, but I realise that only two countries in the world - Russia and the United States - are able to act, as they say, on collision courses," the political scientist summed up the conversation with Pravda.Ru.In turn, military political scientist Alexander Perendzhiev said that as long as Russia has turned the cards over, it means that developments of even more powerful weapons are underway too. "We will not expose these cards now, and when they (the weapon - Ed.) are ready, it will be too late. In short, we act on the basis of Suvorov's principle: convince is to win," the expert concluded in the interview with Pravda.Ru. Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
The Russian Defence Ministry has decided to start recycling Voevoda ICBMs to replace them with Sarmat intercontinental ballistic missiles, Deputy Defence Minister Yuri Borisov said. The Voevoda ICBM was developed back in the mid-1980s, the official said. "Time goes by, technology moves forward, and the system becomes obsolete," Borisov added. The Voevoda complex with "heavy" missile RS-20B was put on combat duty in the late 1980s. At present, the missile remains the most powerful of all Russian ICBMs. It is still effective for the deployment of the echeloned missile defence system.Editor-in-chief of Arsenal of the Fatherland magazine, Colonel Viktor Murakhovsky, said that one of the reasons for the recycling of Voevoda missiles is the policy of the Ukrainian administration."Since there was neither production nor spare parts in Russia, it did not make any sense to restore it: one would need to invest a lot in restoring the production of components that are no longer up-to-date," Murakhovsky said.The Sarmat missile can be equipped with up to 15 warheads, whereas its range makes up to 11,000 kilometres.The RS-28 Sarmat (ICBM) comes as a conceptual continuation of the Voyevoda R36M2. NATO's reporting name for the world's heaviest ICBMs is Satan. Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
The authorities of the United Kingdom have been manipulating the public opinion to boycott the 2018 World Cup in Russia.According to British officials, the boycott will take place should it be established that Russian special services were involved in the poisoning of former spy Sergei Skripal. Previously, the British police asked the army to help in the investigation of the crime against the former Russian spy, who was allegedly poisoned in Salisbury with a nerve agent.According to The Times, the boycott of the World Cup 2018 is considered as one of the options to respond to the poisoning of Sergei Skripal in the UK. The United Kingdom may ask Poland, Australia and Japan to refuse to travel to the 2018 World Cup.Russian bloggers believe that the story is developing in accordance with a traditional scenario: no one needs any proof to start another wave of anti-Russian hysteria. Yet, The Times assumes that Russia is likely hunting for double agents residing in the UK because MI6 is good at recruiting Russian spies.If it is finally established that Moscow stands behind the poisoning of former spy Sergei Skripal, countermeasures may include the boycott of the upcoming World Cup in Russia, as well as the buildup of NATO troops on the eastern flank of the union.One does not need to look for any proofs when it comes to an anti-Russian campaign. Most likely, Russian bloggers believe, they will find another "Rodchenkov" who will unveil all details about Russia's plans to poison "law-abiding" British citizens. Afterwards, the UK football team will refuse to go to Russia for the World Cup triggering the domino effect. Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
The Russian military leadership came to conclusion that the goal of the creation of the so-called "military Schengen" area in Europe was to accelerate the deployment of troops to the borders of Russia.Deputy Defense Minister Colonel-General Alexander Fomin said that such decisions became a new priority for NATO. Fomin said in an interview with the Krasnaya Zvezda newspaper that "the new priority of the military-political leadership of NATO is the improvement of the logistics and transport infrastructure within Europe, and the creation of the so-called" military Schengen" area. "The essence of the "military Schengen" is to move troops to Russian borders within the shortest period of time possible.The Deputy Minister of Defense of the Russian Federation noted that stocks of weapons, ammunition and food are being created for the rapid deployment of an additional group of troops in various parts of Europe.Presently, there are coordination centers in Estonia, Poland, Hungary, Romania, Lithuania, Latvia, Bulgaria and Slovakia.Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
According to senior government sources in Seoul, the meeting between US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un may take place in Pyongyang.White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said that the US president would accept an invitation to meet with the leader of the DPRK in a place and at the time that has yet to be determined.The sitting President of the United States has never had a meeting with his North Korean counterpart.Most likely, the meeting between the leaders of the DPRK and the USA will take place in Pyongyang, a representative of the Ministry of the Republic of Korea for Unification said. In the past, the DPRK leadership had not expressed a desire to go to any country other than China and Russia. To crown it all, it was said that it was Kim Jong-un who came up with the idea of the meeting, the South Korean official said.Earlier, during his speech in Missouri, US President Donald Trump called the leader of the DPRK, Kim Jong-un, "little rocket man" and a "a sick puppy."Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
Russian President Vladimir Putin said that he learned about the hijacking of an aircraft only a minute before the start of the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics in Sochi. The hijackers, Putin said, wanted the plane be redirected to Sochi. Later it turned out, however, that it was just a stupid joke of a drunk passenger. Putin shared the story in a documentary by Andrei Kondrashov, which was published in social networks.According to Putin, "somewhere in the middle of the way, an aide-de-camp gave me the phone with one of the heads of the operational headquarters for ensuring the safety of the Olympic Games on the line. He reported that a plane had been hijacked. The plane was bound to Istanbul from Ukraine, but the hijackers wanted it to land it in Sochi.""The same chief of the security staff called again some time later and said that it was a drunken joke, that the aircraft was flying to Turkey and would be landing there soon," Putin added. Also in the documentary, Russian President Vladimir Putin spoke about the tragedy with the Kursk nuclear submarine. According to him, the sinking of the Russian submarine occurred because of the unsatisfactory state of affairs in the Russian army at that time."After the collapse of the Soviet Union, we had enormous difficulties in the economy, in the social sphere, and in the army too. Of course, all that could not pass the army by," the president said in an interview for the documentary simply titled "Putin." The tragedy of the Kursk submarine came as a manifestation of the general state of affairs in the Armed Forces.Putin said that he had hardly sworn in as president after elections by the time when the Kursk sank and did not even know that there were large-scale military exercises taking place in the Barents Sea."The Minister of Defence called me and said that we lost the submarine, but the sub was found, and they were going to work on that question. It was not clear that something tragic was happening there, but then, of course, all that unfolded in full," Putin recalls. Given the state of the Russian army back in those years, "there was nothing surprising about the tragedy." At the same time, he said that it was a colossal tragedy.The cause of the tragedy had been established: an explosion occurred in the torpedo compartment, a fire broke out, ammunition detonated, and the hull of the submarine practically popped. "And, of course, this can not be forgotten," the Russian leader said.He also said that after the tragedy, he decided to talk to submariners' relatives in order to support them and assure them that the submarine would be retrieved from the bottom of the sea. Putin also said that he had been warned against attempts to raise the boat from the seafloor, but he insisted, because he had given a promise.The Russian nuclear-powered submarine missile cruiser Kursk sank in the Barents Sea on August 12, 2000, during naval exercises. All 118 crew members were killed.In a part of the documentary about Syria, Putin spoke about the heroic feat of corporal Denis Portnyagin, who, in an unequal battle with terrorists in Syria, was ready to explode himself not to be captured."Not only did he repulse an attack of terrorists. There were only four or five of them (Russian military men - ed.) - a group of special operations forces that were engaged in finding targets for our aircraft. There was an unexpected attack of militants, the regular army pulled back, some units of the Syrian army did too, but the Russian group stayed and they took the battle," Putin said. According to Putin, in that battle with terrorists on August 16, 2017, the commander and the second officer were wounded, and corporal Portnyagin took all the combat work on himself and repelled several attacks. He requested help and prepared himself for self-destruction not to be taken captive."Moreover, he drew the fire upon himself and gave precise instructions. Our artillerymen managed to cut off the terrorists with the help of mortar fire, then our aircraft struck, and after that another group of special operations forces approached them, and all were taken out to safety," the president said.He noted that there are many of such people in the Russian army - the ones who are ready to fight in an unequal battle. "They are heroes, of course. If they are not heroes, then who? I know that there are many such people in our armed forces," Putin said.Corporal Denis Portnyagin was awarded the title of Hero of the Russian Federation in late 2017.Pravda.Ru
n the tension of this apparently eternal post-vote of March 4th, the characteristics of the Italian spirit began to stand out. They add up to the events of everyday life, different from the electoral contest, perhaps little precedent or little following to it, but all part of those that we could now define the Italian miseries, punctuated by the passing of the times.
Science, the art of Capital vs. Capital, the art of Science
By Rubén González, Daniel Heredia and Mikel Vivanko.
"It would be possible to write a whole history of the inventions made since 1830 with the sole purpose of supplying the capital with weapons against the revolts of the working class." (Karl Marx, 1967a, p 436).
The Skripal Incident-Another Anti-Russian Provocation
The British government is talking war with Russia over a mysterious incident that is claimed to have taken place on Sunday March 4, just a few kilometres from the secrecy shrouded British biological and chemical warfare research and development facility at Porton Down in Wiltshire. I say claimed since we have very little information confirming what exactly took place outside of government statements and we have seen no photographs of the alleged victims in their hospital beds to convince us that the alleged victims did fall ill and are being treated. However, let us assume that the incident as described did take place.
The mystery consists in the fact that the victims, former Russian colonel of military intelligence, Sergei Skripal, and his daughter, were not under any known threat from Russia. Skripal was charged and convicted in Russia in 2006 of being an asset of the British Secret Intelligence Service, MI6, and handing over secret information to the British. He was jailed, but in a spy swap in 2010 was pardoned and allowed to leave Russia for Vienna, then Britain, where he has been living ever since. Why he was pardoned is difficult to determine, unless it was necessary legally to effect the swap with the British. In any even the Russians had washed their hands of him but it seems the British had other uses for him, as their expendable man for a provocation against Russia.
As global mobilization intensifies on women's rights, UN's largest meeting on gender equality begins
Spotlight on rural women and girls during the Commission on the Status of Women, focus on critical issues such as ensuring adequate living standards, food and nutrition security, access to land, technology, education, health, and ending all forms of violence and harmful practices
New York - Against the backdrop of unprecedented global efforts for women's rights and gender equality, the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) is set to begin next week at the UN Headquarters in New York. This is the UN's largest gathering on gender equality and women's rights, and the single largest forum for UN Member States, civil society organizations and other international actors to build consensus and commitment on policy actions on this issue. The forthcoming 62nd session of the Commission from 12 - 23 March will focus on the priority theme of "Challenges and opportunities in achieving gender equality and the empowerment of rural women and girls".
Europa League Round of 16 First Legs
Three games, three defeats for Russian clubs. CSKA has it all to do away in France, scoring two without reply, Lokomotiv has to score four without reply at home, Zenit has only to score one against Leipzig.
Matches played on March 8 and 15
Bon Voyage to Heaven, Vladimir Galitzine, our Dear and Humble Prince
Prince Vladimir Kirillovich Galitzine, a descendant in the line of the oldest aristocratic family in Russia - an aristocracy that was at least 600 years old, was born in Yugoslavia. His family ended up in Germany, before WWII hell broke loose, culminating their flight of escape in the United States of America.
For 38 years Vladimir Kirillovich Galitzine served as Treasurer of The Cathedral of Our Lady of the Sign, which was backed by the Russian nobility. It was one of the churches housed in the headquarters of the Sinod of bishops outside of Russia, located on the Upper East Side. Prince Galitzine presided as Head of the Russian Nobility Association. He was approachable, humble and humorous. A more blessed man is rare to find.
Commemoration of International Women's Day amidst unprecedented global movement for women's rights
Rural and urban activists take centre stage as Monica Ramirez, Reese Witherspoon, Danai Gurira join the event at the United Nations
New York-Coming on the heels of unprecedented global efforts for women's rights, equality and justice, International Women's Day, 8 March, will put a spotlight on the tireless work of activists who have been central to these extraordinary movements worldwide. Under this year's theme, "Time is Now: Rural and Urban Activists Transforming Women's Lives", events around the world will capture the vibrant work of activists and their mobilization for change.
Italian elections 2018: Marcello Foa's opinion
There is a lot of euphoria in Italy today: the 5 Stars Movement and the League celebrate the results obtained in the last political elections. Someone, however, cries and quite rightly. Silvio Berlusconi certainly did not expect the débâcle that his creature suffered, Forza Italia, and not even the Democratic Party of Matteo Renzi suspected of being punished by voters. However, as is clear to everyone, numbers do not allow anyone to form a new government, be it a by single party or a coalition. It would take a Grosse Koalition, as the Germans say, but how? We talk about it with Marcello Foa, who shares with us his opinions on the post-vote of March 4th.
Q) The distribution of votes makes it impossible to implement a government for a single party or a single coalition. Is this what the old political class intended with the electoral reform voted not long before the elections?
Champions: City and Juve
Manchester City shows more and more the hallmark of the Barcelona-Guardiola tiki-taka short-passing soccer style, used by Bayern in Guardiola's tenure and Germany in the FIFA Brazil World Cup. Juve, the Old Lady, blew away Spurs' spirited presence.
Russia has every opportunity to make a breakthrough in increasing labor productivity. To achieve this goal, Russia needs to pull out from the Washington Consensus, in particular from the American patent law, economist Vasily Koltashov believes.By 2060, Russia will lag behind the United States of America even more - experts at the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) said. Without reforms, per capita GDP in Russia will grow by only 0.7 percent in the next 12 years, economists predict. Labor productivity in Russia has not grown in recent years, and in 2018-2030 it will accelerate only to 0.5 percent. Experts advise Russia should increase labor productivity through the public administration reform, as well as by increasing the duration of school education and reducing trade tariffs.Vasily Koltashov, the head of the Centre for Economic Studies at the Institute of Globalisation and Social Movements, told Pravda.Ru that OECD economists say the following: the USA will be just fine, and Russia will be just bad. "This is a strange affirmation, because the Russian economy has been developing in recent years in conjunction with processes in the global economy.""In China, the economy is growing, an economic growth is possible in India, but in most countries there is stagnation. In the European Union, there is depressive stagnation. If we look at the United States, their GDP growth is actually equal to the growth of the USA's public debt and costs for its servicing. Strangely enough, no one says that the Americans have their salaries too high and their labor productivity too low in proportion to their wages, which makes their products completely uncompetitive," Vasily Koltashov told Pravda.Ru.According to the economist, Russia can ensure the economic growth if the country ensures the development of its own production capacities. This is what the import substitution policy is aimed at - to expand the export range. "Russia needs to import only what Russia needs. We should not import poultry from the USA as we did during Yeltsin's times. We should import, for example, equipment that we cannot make ourselves," the expert said. OECD experts give harmful recommendations, Vasily Koltashov said in an interview with Pravda.Ru. The era of free trade is over, and one needs to fight on the world market. Therefore, "trade duties must be kept high and it is necessary to fight smugglers mercilessly.""It is highly important Russia should no longer obey the rules of the Washington Consensus. Instead, Russia should start dismantling those rules. We should refuse to obey the American patent law. Having started the war of sanctions, the Americans violated all rules of free unlimited trade, because politics has no right to interfere with commerce. We must have complete freedom to use technology, and then we will quickly overcome the backlog in productivity," the expert told Pravda.Ru.Western experts always speak about the reduction of the role of state in economy. "Yet, they talk about our state, but not theirs. Their state can interfere in our economy as much as it wishes. Yet, even if we try to follow their pieces of advice, the Russian economy will collapse, just like the economy of any other country, because the time for such recipes has passed," Vasily Koltashov told Pravda.Ru. It is worthy of note that PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) published a report in 2017 titled "The World in 2050". PwC experts predicted that the Russian economy would become the strongest in Europe by this time. Reference: The Washington consensus is a type of macroeconomic policy that the IMF and the WB recommended at the end of the 20th century for application in the countries that experience financial and economic crises. Recommendations to such countries reflected the common position of the US administration, and major international financial organisations, such as the IMF and the World Bank, as well as leading American think tanks.Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
The US military used USS Carney to test a new electronic warfare system. The US destroyer left the Black Sea in early March 2018.According to The Drive, there was AN/SLQ-32(V)6 equipment on board the destroyer. The equipment was upgraded as part of the SEWIP program (Surface Electronic Warfare Improvement Program) Block 2.USS Carney had spent two weeks in the Black Sea region on a "mission." It was the first time when two American ground combatants were patrolling a closed body of water since Sea Breeze 2017 drills. USS Carney was photographed with the new upgraded equipment on board as it was passing through the Bosphorus Strait. It was said that the upgrade for the radar and the signal receiver came as a significant enhancement for USS Carney to counteract missile threats to ships. The Drive notes that the use of the upgraded AN/SLQ-32(V)6 in the Black Sea gave the US military an opportunity to test systems in the area dominated by Russian radio electronic impact equipment.Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
The Russian Embassy in the UK posted an ironic message on Twitter commenting on most recent publications in the British media regarding the poisoning of Sergei Skripal, a former Russian GRU colonel (Central Intelligence Directorate)."Presumption of innocence 2.0: no idea what happened, no idea why it happened, but Russians are to blame," the message posted on the official Twitter account of the Russian Embassy to the UK said. British officials stated that the UK would take tough measures against Russia should it be proved that Russian special services were involved in the alleged poisoning of the former GRU officer. Sergei Skripal, 66, and his 33-year-old daughter were found unconscious on a bench near the shopping centre in Salisbury, UK, on March 6. The two lost their consciousness due to "exposure to an unknown substance" and were hospitalised.The substance to which the victims could have been exposed has not been established yet.Subsequently, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said that Moscow did not have information as to what reasons could cause the incident with Skripal. She added that the West did not miss the chance to use the incident to fuel anti-Russian hysteria yet again. Pravda.Ru
A Mi-8 helicopter crashed in Chechnya on March 7, a source at the power structures of the republic told RIA Novosti. The helicopter belonged to one of special services of the Russian Federation. At least five people were killed. There were nine people on board the helicopter, and some are considered to have survived the crash. Emergency services have not reached the site of the crash yet, so the number of victims is yet to be specified. The helicopter crashed in Hangihoy Gorge in Itum-Kalinsky district of Chechnya. According to preliminary reports, the helicopter, which most likely belonged to the border service, could crash because of bad weather conditions. On March 6, Russian transport aircraft An-26 crashed during landing at the airdrome of Hmeymim airbase in Syria. The crash left no survivors, representatives for the Russian Defence Ministry said. Originally, it was reported that the crash killed 32, but the death toll was later specified to 39. Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
Russian President Vladimir Putin said in an interview for Vladimir Solovyov's film "World Order 2018" said that Moscow could use nuclear weapons only as a retaliatory strike."As for this particular topic, it is, of course, very important, extremely sensitive. I want to tell you, so that everyone here in the world knows, that our plans - I hope, it will never be - technical plans to apply nuclear weapons are about the so-called retaliatory, counter-impact strike," Putin said, RIA Novosti reports. The Russian president said that the decision on the use of such weapons would be made only if the missile attack warning systems detected the launch of missiles and gave an accurate forecast for the flight trajectory and the time when warheads would fall on the territory of Russia."This is called a reciprocal, counter strike, when we have a legitimate right to respond," Putin said.Earlier, the president promised an instant response should anyone use nuclear weapons against Russia and allies.On March 1, Vladimir Putin presented second-to-none weapons during his speech before the Federal Assembly.Pravda.Ru
Russian President Vladimir Putin said in an interview for Vladimir Solovyov's documentary "World Order 2018" that the United States "grossly and brazenly" deceived Russia before the coup in Ukraine."American partners asked us to do everything possible - and I am saying it nearly word for word here - to stop Yanukovych from using the army, to make the opposition leave squares and administrative buildings and proceed to the implementation of the agreements to normalise the situation," Putin said, RIA Novosti reports. Russia agreed, Putin said, but the coup occurred in Ukraine the following day. The US authorities did not say a word about the fact that the events in Ukraine were developing in a different way. Moreover, the Americans supported the coup, Putin said. Vladimir Putin stressed that it was Washington that made the coup happen, and the USA had to support the Kiev authorities. "So grossly and brazenly, perhaps, it was a first (time. - ed.). They told us: "Let's do it this way," but in fact they did everything their own way and did not even bother to say anything about that. I think we've never had this before," Putin concluded.Speaking about the annexation of the Crimea, Putin said that someone deliberately brought Russia to that line."I sometimes think, and I think that there are certain grounds for this, that someone deliberately took us to the line, on which we had to act the way we acted. Of course, there were few of those, who expected us to act so quickly, so resolutely, if not brazenly," Putin said.Crimea became a Russian region after the referendum that was held there in March 2014, at which the majority of Crimean residents voted for reunification with Russia.Pravda.Ru
Champions League: Liverpool, Real Madrid
Liverpool overcame FC Porto after a 0-0 home draw, FC Porto rueing the home drubbing 0-5 in the first leg, the fruit of Liverpool's pressing and the fact that these days soccer equals wallets, wallets equal soccer. Real did what they have always done, Cristiano Ronaldo.
Champions League Round of 16
The audio recording recovered from the flight recorder of the An-148 aircraft that crashed near Moscow soon after takeoff on February 11 has been published. The recording shows what was happening in the cockpit of the passenger airplane several minutes before the crash. The readings of the sensors indicate that the second pilot had forgotten to turn on the heating of one of the devices. Afterwards, when the point of no return was passed, the pilot panicked and sent the plane down rather than up. Velocity sensors were showing different numbers almost immediately after take-off. A source at the Russian Aviation Agency confirmed the authenticity of the decryption of the audio recording but withheld official comments on the subject. Officials with the International Aviation Committee declined to comment until the end of the investigation of the air crash.Transcript of the recording: Commander of the aircraft (CA): Up! Thaaaat's right.Co-pilot (CP): OK, OK.CA: And you ...CP: This is rubbish!CA: I understand, you wanted it ... And you did on the contrary, down.CP: Okay, okay, you'll talk later. I mean everything else. So, we control everything!CA: Everything is fine.CP: OK, the speed is normal. AUTOINFORMATOR: Equalise speed! Equalise speed!CP: Op-op-op ... 390!CA: Why down?! Why are you going down? Why down ?! Where are you going?!AUTOINFORMATOR: Equalise speed! Equalise speed!VP: Enough! *** The speed is 200, ***!CA: Altitude! Altitude! Altitude!AUTOINFORMATOR: Terrain ahead! Terrain ahead! PULL UP! Terrain ahead!CA: Up!AUTOINFORMATOR: Terrain ahead! Terrain ahead! PULL UP! Terrain ahead!CA: That's all, we are ***!A commission of the Russian Aviation Agency concluded as a result of its investigation that there were many violations made in the activities of the airline. The An-148 of Saratov Airlines crashed on February 11 a few minutes after it took off from Domodedovo Airport. All 65 passengers and six crew members were killed. According to the IAC, a dangerous situation aboard the aircraft appeared 2.5 minutes after take-off, when the aircraft was at an altitude of 1,300 meters.Pravda.Ru
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said that he would not refuse from the purchase of S-400 Triumf anti-aircraft missile systems from the Russian Federation despite possible sanctions from the United States."We are not going to report anything to you. Without any concessions, we will go on the right path to achieve our goals," Erdogan said. The fact of the negotiations between Turkey and Russia on the purchase of S-400 became known in November 2016. The Russian side confirmed the contract on September 12, 2017. The same day, Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said that the advance payment on the contract had been made.Spokesman for the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations Ben Cardin said earlier that the United States could impose sanctions on Turkey if the latter buys S-400 systems from Russia. The senator turned to US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Treasury Secretary Stephen Mnuchin to check the contract for its compliance with the US law on tightening the sanctions regime against the Russian Federation.Pravda.RuRead article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
An-26, a Russian transport aircraft carrying 26 passengers and 6 crew members on board crashed during landing at the airdrome of Hmeymim airbase. The crash left no survivors, representatives for the Russian Defence Ministry said. The ministry said that the aircraft hit the ground when it was only 500 meters away from the runway. Most likely, the aircraft crashed due to a technical malfunction. "According to reports from the site, there was no fire impact made on the plane," Defence Ministry officials said.An-26 is a military transport aircraft equipped with two turboprop engines and one additional jet engine. The carrying capacity of the aircraft is 5,500 kilos, the cruising speed is 435 km/h. The aircraft is designed for the transport of cargoes at small and medium range.In late 2017, a Russian Mi-24 helicopter crashed in Syria while flying from Hmeymim airbase. The crash killed the two pilots on board, but the on-board mechanic survived. The cause of the disaster was a technical malfunction.Pravda.Ru
Sergei Skripal, an ex-colonel of the GRU (Russia's Central Intelligence Directorate), convicted in Russia for state treason, had requested police assistance in London before he was poisoned. The colonel feared for his life. According to The Telegraph, Zizzi restaurant in the centre of Salisbury was closed after the incident. The local authorities issued a statement that there was currently no health hazard to residents in the town. Nevertheless, local residents were recommended to seek medical assistance should they feel signs of malaise.Sergei Skripal and the woman, who was having lunch with him at the above-mentioned restaurant, remain in critical condition. The woman was later identified as Skripal's 33-year-old daughter Yulia. It has not been reported yet what kind of substance Skripal and his daughter were poisoned with. Most likely, it was fentanyl - a synthetic substance, the biological effect of which on a person is close to heroin.Skripal and his daughter were found unconscious on a bench not far from The Maltings - a shopping centre in Salisbury. It was reported that the woman was leaning on the man and looked as if she had died. The man was making strange movements with his hands while looking up in the sky. Sergei Skripal was convicted in Russia for espionage. In 2010, he was pardoned by President Dmitry Medvedev and granted asylum in the UK.According to Russian President Vladimir Putin, a traitor has to hide all his life without being able to talk to his loved ones. "The person who chooses this life will regret it a thousand times. Traitors end up either with drunkenness, or drugs - in a ditch." The Kremlin officially announced that it had no information about the causes of the incident that occurred to former GRU officer Sergei Skripal."We do not have information about the reasons that could cause that, what the person was doing and what it could be connected to. You know how he came to be in the West, I will not repeat this. The Kremlin is not surprised at the appearance of opinions abroad about the involvement of Russian citizens in his poisoning," Putin's official spokesman Dmitry Peskov said. Former chief of the Department for the Government Information of the Russian Federation, FSB Major-General Alexander Mikhailov, told Pravda.Ru that traitors always suffer from a complicated psychological condition that they have to live with. "They suspect and expect something all the time," he said. According to news reports, Skripal was taking fentanyl - a sedative anesthetic drug with narcotic components that blocks pain and produces a soothing effect on a person. "Skripal was in a stressful state for a long time and he could miscalculate his dose, although we do not know, of course, whether it happened deliberately or unintentionally," Alexander Mikhailov told Pravda.Ru.Skripal did not does not pose any threat to the Russian Federation because everything has changed. He was of no interest to the UK either, the expert added. It is worthy of note that the poisoning of former FSB spy Alexander Litvinenko was presented in the West as an act of revenge of Russia's special services for disclosing "Putin's ties with the mafia." On the threshold of the presidential election in Russia, the case of Sergei Skripal could be used for a similar purpose.Reference: Sergei Skripal began working for the United Kingdom's MI6 intelligence agency in the late 1990s, while serving in the Russian Ground Forces. He was reportedly paid a large sum of money for giving away the identities of a number of Russian agents. In December 2004, Skripal was arrested. He was charged with "high treason in the form of espionage", and was convicted. Prosecutors initially argued for fifteen years in prison - Skripal was eventually sentenced to thirteen, in recognition of his poor health and the fact that he co-operated with investigators. The affair was not revealed to the public until after he was sentenced in August 2006. Skripal's lawyers have appealed the sentenceIn June 2016, former FSB officer and employee of the External Relations Department of the Russian Orthodox Church, Yevgeny Petrin, was sentenced to 12 years in prison for passing strategic intelligence information to US intelligence services. According to the lawyer, Petrin was accused of transmitting information about the division of the FSB in which he had worked from 2013 to 2014. Petron did not plead guilty. In a letter to the president, Petrin said that he had uncovered a "network of moles" in the Moscow Patriarchate, which was supposedly working to split the Church.In 2012, professor of the Baltic State Technical University, Yevgeny Afanasyev, was sentenced to 12.5 years in prison. He was found guilty of delivering information about the Bulava missile to China with the assistance of another professor, Sviatoslav Bobyshev. In April 2015, Afanasyev died in a colony from a heart attack.In 2010, Colonel of the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service Alexander Poteyev, fled to the United States. In November 2011, a Russian court convicted him of treason and desertion in absentia and sentenced him to 25 years in prison. Poteyev was involved in the disclosure of a group of Russian spies that included Anna Chapman. In July 2016, it was reported that Poteyev died. In May 2010, an employee of one of the closed Russian research institutes, Gennady Sipachev, was sentenced to four years in prison. According to investigators, he handed over secret maps of the General Staff to the USA. The court found that the materials transmitted to the USA could be used to correct the guidance of cruise missiles. The defendant pleaded guilty and cooperated with the investigation; his sentence was mitigated. In the early 2000s, former FSB officer Alexander Litvinenko fled to the UK. Litvinenko had repeatedly criticised the work of Russian special services and the Russian authorities. Litvinenko died in London in November 2006 due to poisoning with radioactive polonium. In 2012, British media reported that the deceased collaborated with British and Spanish intelligence services.In June 2002, the Moscow City Court sentenced Oleg Kalugin, a former Major-General of the KGB to 15 years in prison for high treason. In the mid-1990s, Kalugin left Russia. In June 2001, when in the United States, he testified against George Trofimoff, who was accused of spying for Russia. Later, Kalugin received US citizenship; he still resides in the USA, where he is a member of the advisory council of the International Spy Museum in Washington.In 2000, a former employee of the Foreign Intelligence Service, Sergey Tretyakov, was exposed. Tretyakov had served for five years as deputy head of the Russian reconnaissance mission to the United Nations. Tretyakov had also spied for the USA s, where he and his family were granted asylum. The former double agent died in 2010 - at the peak of the largest spy scandal in the US-Russian relations, when eleven US-based agents were accused of collaborating with the External Intelligence Service. It was reported that Tretyakov allegedly ratted them out and was punished. However, a forensic examination established that that he had died by choking on a piece of meat.Pravda.Ru
The 90th Academy Awards show has become a disappointment for Russia yet again. Andrei Zvyagintsev's "Loveless" drama nominated for the Oscar in "Best Foreign Language Film" category, was left in the basket, whereas the Oscar for the best documentary went to "Icarus" - an "investigation" by Bryan Fogel on doping in Russian sports.Many in Russia were surprised that the award for the "Best Film of the Year" went to the bizarre motion picture by Guillermo del Toro, which many in Russia inadvertently associate with the iconic Soviet drama film "Amphibian Man."In the pursuit of notorious tolerance - in the bad sense of the word - the "Oscars" become increasingly boring, predictable and much less interesting than they were just a few years ago, film critic David Schneider says. In his opinion, so much emphasis on the issue of tolerance will eventually destroy the "Oscars" and turn the award ceremony into a semblance of numerous national film awards, which no one pays attention to - even if they are prestigious."How do you explain the choice of American film academics?""I'm very sorry that the Oscar for the best film did not go to "Three Billboards." It seems to me that the academy was scared to face the truth and say to everyone: "Yes, America can be intolerant, hostile, aggressive." The Academy praised outstanding performances of Francis McDormand, Sam Rockwell and Gary Oldman, but gave the two most important awards to Guillermo del Toro's creepy love story."The United States has been living under huge pressure lately. If a man looks at a woman beneath her chin now, she may find it as an act of sexual harassment. This is very sad, the world has gone crazy.""Nevertheless, the Americans had no fear to give the Oscar to a documentary on doping in Russian sports.""They have no fear at all. They had no fear to give the Oscar to Michael Moore - the ardent opponent of George Bush, they preferred Catherine Bigelow's "The Hurt Locker" to James Cameron's "Avatar." They are not afraid to release "American Made" starring Tom Cruise, in which the main character directly accuses the US government of fomenting national conflicts and interfering in affairs of sovereign states. They are not afraid of anything." "Yet, do you think that the American Academy of Motion Picture Arts is politically biased?" "No, absolutely not. One cannot make 6,000 people politically biased. There are certain trends and public influences, but it is impossible to convince 6,000 people of one and the same thing. The Academy is susceptible to influences, but there is no politics here.""What do you think of Jimmy Kimmel's jokes about Putin? When the award was given to "Icarus" -a documentary about the doping scandal - Kimmel said that Putin "didn't rig this competition."""Kimmel also made many other jokes, including the one about the Oscar statuette that is very comfortable to hold in one's hands, because the Oscar has no penis. Let us treat this humour accordingly."Going back to films, we can not condemn them for the documentary with Rodchenkov in it. We do not know how the film is made, and "Oscars" are given for how films are made, rather than for the truth that they reveal. Academics found that the documentary deserves an Oscar, which means that it was made very well."Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
Having raised import duties on steel and aluminum, US President Trump has buried the WTO and declared a commercial war on the whole world. "We are observers here, and this is going to be an interesting show to see," Vladimir Rozhankovsky, leading analyst at Horizon told Pravda.Ru. "Donald Trump announced the introduction of import duties on steel and aluminum. Bloomberg wrote that this would be a gift for the OPEC and Russia, because the US will not be able to build gas and oil pipelines at the expense of American producers. They will be forced to purchase pipe steel at higher prices, shifting its cost on the cost of hydrocarbons. Do you think this is "bad news for the resurgent US shale industry?""First of all, the decision will raise prices on products of such American industries as car making, aircraft making, the construction of housing and offices. As for the oil and gas industry, if there are imported pipes used there, the cost of production will obviously grow. If they make steel more expensive, cars will be more expensive too, the demand in cars will decline, and they will be less competitive globally. In a nutshell, it will be more and more difficult to export American goods. From my point of view, Trump is doing inefficient work when he raises tariffs.""How will steel and aluminum exporters react? What will happen to the steel industry of the allies - Canada, Europe and Japan?""They have many merry days ahead of them. Canada has already expressed a protest in connection with the duties. NAFTA (the free trade zone of the USA - Mexico - Canada) practically does not exist anymore. Canada will be affected most, because its economy is complimentary to the US economy. The Canadian economy may experience a serious setback, because more than 50 percent of Canada's budget revenues come from exports of raw materials and products of primary redistribution of raw materials.""Why doesn't the World Trade Organisation react to the issue?""I think the WTO is dead. On Saturday, March 3rd, Trump said that he did not want to see so many European cars on the US market. This was a declaration of the trade war. Within the WTO, Europeans will meet without the US on a neutral territory. All this does not affect Russia, because Russia lives under plenty of sanctions. Russia remains as an observer here, we can just wait and see what happens in this show." "On March 2, Swedish company Electrolux announced the suspension of plans to invest $250 million in the modernisation of one of its factories in the US and in the development of new products. Is it critical for the US?""Of course. Two months ago, Trump said that he would pay special attention to the production of washing machines. US-based brand Whirlpool has been ousted from the market by other brands, including Electrolux, during ten years. Earlier, when traveling around the States, I could see at least three Whirlpool devices in people's homes - a refrigerator, a dishwasher and a washing machine in every house. During the last ten years, the Americans have opted for Samsung fridges and so on.""Why is it happening?""Because Whirlpool was not offering innovations. Whirlpool did not have two-door fridge models, no models with darkened glass panel, no self-cleaning functions, no scent absorbers, no function of greenhouse atmosphere for vegetables and fruit. And Whirlpool fridges are not energy-saving. The preferences of the American consumer are obvious.""In the last 20 years, America has been engaged in its financial sector, which was thrown off the pedestal in 2008. There was practically no competition in production. It was very painstaking for the Americans to reanimate the dying General Motors. Airbus sells twice as many aircraft as Boeing. "I think that until the Americans weaken the dollar and abolish anachronistic laws, such as the law on the minimum hourly salary, chances for improvement are not so great. The dollar is comfortable on the index from 75 to 80 (USDX - the index showing the ratio of the US dollar to the basket of six major currencies - Ed.). They need a smaller number if they want to give an incentive to exports of American goods. The current level is 90. With such an expensive dollar, the American industry automatically becomes the most expensive production in the world."The minimum hourly wage is another obstacle. Many Americans are unemployed, and they would be willing to work for ten dollars an hour, especially young singles. Yet, they can not do it, because the federal law prescribes the minimum wage of $14.Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
Sunday, March 4th, the general elections left many surprises in Italy. The real winner of this electoral race was the 5 Stars Movement which, despite presenting itself alone and without being part of any coalition, has collected more than 32% of votes, both in the House and in the Senate. A more than remarkable result: simply fantastic. A result due to the commitment of men and women who threw themselves into the electoral campaign with great enthusiasm and without sparing themselves. Their honest behavior and loyalty shown to their voters in the past legislature earned them the trust of an abundant third of the Italian political body.
Of course, there were other surprises: for example, there are people who still vote for Silvio Berlusconi and his "Forza Italia". But at age 82, old Silvio lost his magic. Too much tar on his head, too much glue in his face, too many stitches around his lips that make it difficult to understand when he speaks. Only a miserable 14% for the owner of half of the Italian television and with a soft spot for young girls for a fee. The times have gone by when he came down to collect votes at hand, enchanting the Italian chickens but also the pullets. Berlusconi's road is downhill, in the sense that it goes in ruin. Even the Femen activist who challenged him at the poll, showing her tits in the wind, was not the best ... poor Silvio! It's been really a while since he had his groupies for a fee in Via Dell'Olgettina in Milan!
The Northern League of Matteo Salvini has seen a sparkling result reaching about 18%, more than Forza Italia in whose coalition is. The relations of force are now clear and this is another reason why Berlusconi will not be able to dictate the law at his will. I was skeptical about the results of the League, by the scandals that had shaken it in the past and the political management of its founder Umberto Bossi and attached entourage. Apparently, Salvini played his cards well and the result was seen. It's a sin.
On March 5, US aircraft carrier Carl Vinson and two other warships of the US Navy entered the Vietnamese port of Danang.This has become the first large-scale appearance of US Navy ships in the territorial waters of Vietnam since the end of the Vietnam War in 1975.It was said that the military of the two countries intend to exchange technical experience. The visit of American seamen to Vietnam is connected with the military strengthening of the People's Republic of China in the South China Sea.The war in Vietnam started in 1957 as partisan confrontation in the south of the country. Later on, the US and the USSR that supported South and North Vietnam respectively, became involved in the conflict. The war ended on April 30, 1975 with the victory of North Vietnam.Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
Russian President Vladimir Putin thanked the Federal Security Bureau (FSB) for securing the secrecy of developing new types of weapons."The work on the modern weaponry has taken many years. Thousands of people, hundreds of design and research teams, industrial enterprises of Russia participated in it. I want to note that we managed to provide an effective and efficient counter-intelligence cover for these large-scale projects," Putin said, speaking at the FSB board.The "responsible and difficult work" had to be conducted in difficult conditions. It was only in 2017 when the Russian authorities suppressed activities of 72 officers and 397 agents of foreign special services."I ask you to continue acting the best way possible in this highly important direction not to let foreign intelligence services gain access to information of political, economic, technological and military nature," Putin told the FSB leadership.Speaking on March 1 with an Address to the Federal Assembly, Putin announced the completion of the development of a number of new types of weapons, the capabilities of which make enemy defense systems "useless and simply meaningless."Pravda.Ru
Exports of Russian toys have grown by one-third recently, officials with the Federal Customs Service said. Russia exports its toys primarily to Kazakhstan, Belarus and Ukraine.In 2014 exports of Russian toys were evaluated at 11.7 thousand tons, but then it increased to 15,8 thousand tons in 2017. The three largest buyers of Russian toys are Kazakhstan ($59.3 million in 2017), Belarus ($27 million) and Ukraine ($8 million). Russia also exports its toys to the United States ($4.8 million) and Poland ($ 4.4 million).Prices on domestic toys made up $8,700 per ton in 2017, which was 20% less than in 2014.According to experts from the Ministry of Industry and Trade, the growth in exports has become possible because of an increase in the production of toys by 20 percent over the past two years.High-tech and innovative toys, as well as eco friendly toys enjoy greatest popularity in the exports. Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
According to the Russian military, terrorists in Syria's Eastern Ghouta promised to release civilians in exchange for humanitarian aid.Representatives of the Russian center for reconciliation of the warring parties said with reference to the Syrian military that the humanitarian convoy of the Red Crescent would leave for the suburbs of Damascus on March 5.As many as 45 trucks loaded with humanitarian cargoes will bring food, medicine and basic necessities to Eastern Ghouta of Syria that remains one of the last strongholds of terrorists in Syria, from where militants periodically strike both the outskirts and the center of the Syrian capital. The de-escalation zone was established in Eastern Ghouta in the summer of 2017, but the situation in the region exacerbated sharply over the last several weeks.Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
On March 5, the US Embassy in Ankara will be closed to visitors in connection with a security threat, a statement published by the press service of the US embassy to Turkey said. It was said that on March 5, diplomats will be able to provide only emergency services to people on March 5, when the US Embassy to Turkey is closed for security reasons. The relationship between Turkey and the United States has worsened recently due to two key problems. First off, Ankara is extremely concerned about Pentagon's determination to supply weapons to Kurdish rebels in Syria, whom Ankara considers "terrorists."Secondly, NATO, and the USA in particular, remains highly concerned about Turkey's intention to purchase S-400 Triumf systems from Russia. Washington demands Turkey should terminate the agreement for the purchase of S-400 air defense systems and threats to impose sanctions on Ankara otherwise. Pravda.Ru Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
RQ-4B, the strategic unmanned aerial vehicle of the US Air Force, was again spotted near the line of demarcation in the Donbass.The monitoring data received from Western resources said that the American spy plane with onboard number 10-2043 took off from Sigonella airbase on Italy's Sicily Island and was flying along the line of demarcation of Ukraine with the People's Republic of Donetsk and the People's Republic of Luhansk at an altitude of 16,000 meters.In 2018, the aircraft was repeatedly used for reconnaissance purposes near the territory of the People's Republic of Donetsk and the People's Republic of Luhansk, as well as near the Black Sea coast of Russia, including in the vicinity of the Crimean Peninsula and the Krasnodar region.Earlier, the heavy drone RQ-4B Global Hawk was seen cruising along the south-west and the south coast of the Crimea and the coast of the Krasnodar region up to Sochi, as well as near the borders of the Leningrad and Pskov regions.Pravda.RuRead article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
No Matter What the Western Propaganda Says, Chinese Democracy is Alive and Well!
By: Andre Vltchek
New huge wave of 'China bashing' is once again rolling from Europe and North America. Its water is filthy and murky. It tries to smear everything about the present Chinese system: from its own and unique democratic model, to its leadership, as well as the political, economic and social system.
U.S. Institutionalized Bang-Bang, A White and Protestant Declared War
"We're here because my daughter has no voice - she was murdered last week, shot nine times. How many schools, how many children have to get shot? It stops here, with this administration and me." Andrew Pollack to Donald Trump at the White House; a U.S. citizen whose 18-year-old daughter Meadow was killed at Stoneman Douglas in Florida, on February 14.
"Rather than the ruling party, the Republicans, self-examining their domestic gun policies, of trying at least to come to grips with the causes of these appalling shootings of children by children, the world has stood aghast at their 'spin': defending guns, defending the powerful lobby of the N.R.A., and Trump coming up with the immoral 'solution' of arming teachers: making sharpshooters out of them. Rambo to the rescue", Sociologist Maria Páez Victor.
In the near future, the Russian army will receive several pre-serial intercontinental ballistic missiles Sarmat, the head of the Committee of the Council of Federation on Defense and Security, Viktor Bondarev said.
At the same time, he noted that it would be premature to talk about the serial production of Sarmat missiles in the next year or two.
"Their supplies to the Strategic Missile Force are scheduled for 2018-2017 within the framework of the state armament program," Bondarev added.
Putin's Address to the Federal Assembly on March 1 came as a bombshell for the world. The speech that the Russian president delivered at Manezh Exhibition Hall just outside the Kremlin made everyone believe that Putin was presenting Russia's new fantastic weapons to the United States. However, some assumed that Putin was not talking about the United States of America as Russia's prime opponent.
Retired general of the Italian army, co-author of the book "Geoeconomics: Tools, Strategy and Tactics," Carlo Jean, said that "Putin announced to the world that he reached nuclear parity with the United States again." According to the general, Russia has been compelled to run the colossal modernization of its nuclear arsenal since the time of Obama's presidency. The Russians started doing it in response to Obama's initiative to modernize the enormous American arsenal contrary to the Nobel Peace Prize that was given to him for his promise to dismantle it, the Italian general told Ilsussidiario.net website. According to him, the US plan is worth about 1.2 trillion dollars and spans 30 years. Forty billion of the amount was invested in the project this year.
The significance of Putin's speech is that he has reaffirmed the strength of his country, which he had raised from ruins."We saw the Russian military power reviving in the Middle East, in Ukraine, in the Crimea," the expert said. Putin's call for an international dialogue concerns the Middle East, where Putin remains in a situation which he can not resolve."
The head of Gazprom, Aleksei Miller, stated that the company was terminating all contracts with Ukraine immediately. Gazprom, Miller said, was forced to make such a decision to stop Ukraine from solving its problems at Gazprom's expense.
According to Miller, it goes about both the contacts for natural gas supplies to Ukrainian consumers and the agreement on the transit of the Russian gas to Europe via Ukraine.
The decision to terminate the contracts was made after the Stockholm Court of Arbitration violated Gazprom's interests.
The leaders of the Russian Paralympic Committee applied to the International Paralympic Committee with a request to appoint a volunteer as a standard-bearer for the opening of the Winter Paralympic Games.
Pavel Rozhkov, First Vice-President of the RPC said: "When I in Bonn a week and a half ago for the meeting of the International Paralympic Committee, I said that there would be no volunteers who would want to carry the flag at the opening of the Paralympic Games. We would like a volunteer to be appointed for the purpose. The IPC approached the request from the Russian Paralympic Committee with understanding," the official said.
On January 29, the International Paralympic Committee extended the suspension of the Russian Paralympic Committee. At the same time, the IPC allowed Russian athletes to take part in the 2018 Paralympic Games as neutral athletes.
Former President of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovych raved of misfortunes at a press conference in Moscow. He said that he lived at the expense of the family, whereas his money could not be found in any bank of the world.
"At whose expense do I live? I have a family, I have a son, a young and healthy man. As they say: I do not count your money, and you do not count mine. I can not say that I'm happy. It's very hard for me, it's painful," Yanukovych said.
The former president of Ukraine said that no one could be jealous of his life. "Can you believe that?" Yanukovych said.
Russia's largest bank, Sberbank, considers a possibility to launch a pilot project to accept population deposits in accordance with the rules of Islam. The project is said to be introduced in the republics of Tatarstan, Chechnya and Bashkortostan.
Adviser to Deputy Chairman of the Board of Sberbank, Behnam Gurban-zade, said during the first Russian Islamic Economic Forum that the project to accept deposits from the population in accordance with the norms of Islam is expected to be launched before the end of the year.
A special plastic card is planned to be issued for Islamic customers. Islamic banking stipulates for banking activities in accordance with religious norms of Islam. In particular, Islamic banking excludes loan interest rates and various financial speculations. Islamic banks do not pay their clients income on deposits, save for the inflation interest set by the state.
The government of Iran imposed new restrictions on the use of the US dollar in the country. The use of the US dollar for import operations in the Islamic Republic of Iran has been banned from February 28, Forbes reports with reference to Iranian media.
Starting from February 28, any supply orders or other import declarations where US dollars are used will not be processed by the Iranian customs authorities.
According to Mehdi Kasraipur, the director of Foreign Exchange Operations and Policy Department of the Central Bank of Iran, the new rules should not affect current trading operations much, given that the use of the American currency in Iran was already limited. Iranian banks could not conduct operations in US dollars because of US sanctions.
In response to the proposal from Vladimir Putin to help the Defense Ministry come up with a name for latest arms systems, which the Russian President presented during the announcement of his Address to the Federal Assembly, the Russians started to make their offers.
Two new types of Russian strategic weapons remain nameless for the time being: a global range cruise missile with a nuclear power plant and a nuclear-capable unmanned underwater vehicle. In addition, one needs to coin the name for he new laser weapons as well.
"For those who are interested in military equipment, I would like to propose, I would ask them to propose the names for this new hardware," the Russian president said, introducing the new weapons of the Russian Federation, noting that one can submit their options on the websites of the Defense Ministry.
In his Address to the Federal Assembly, Vladimir Putin presented several military innovations and made a number of high-profile statements addressed to his Western counterparts. Putin's speech at Moscow's Manezh Exhibition Hall received an extensive coverage not only in Russia, but also in Western media. Predictably, Western publications expressed their amazement about the landmark speech from the Russian president that he has delivered only two weeks before the presidential election in Russia. "Putin touts new 'invincible' missile capable of piercing US defenses," CNN wrote. "Russian President Vladimir Putin boasted Thursday of new weaponry that will render NATO defenses "completely useless" -- and delivered a warning to the world about Russia's resurgent military might," the network said noting that the military might of the United States was ten times more powerful. At the same time, CNN journalists expressed a humble hope that all of the new weapons that Putin presented on March 1, 2018 were purely defensive. "Putin unveils new nuclear missile, says 'listen to us now'," an article headline on NBC News says. The publication also pays most attention to the presentation of new weapons in Putin's speech. The article focuses on the fact that Russia, when developing new weapons, ignores the development of the social sphere."Putin claims Russia has nuclear arsenal capable of avoiding missile defenses," an article published on The Washington Post said. The publication quoted a military expert, who was following Putin's speech. The expert, Alexander Golts, spoke to other weapons experts and admitted that they "were all in shock, like me." Putin has definitely managed to surprise and scare the West with his speech on March 1. US media will continue discussing his speech for weeks, because the Russian president has overturned the concept of anti-missile security.
Russian President Vladimir Putin, during his annual Address to the Federal Assembly presented new fantastic weapons as a response to the deployment of the US missile defense system and the USA's pullout from the Treaty on the Limitation of Strategic Nuclear Offensive Arms.The video parade of Russia's latest developments in armory has showed the whole world that Russia was a global leader in the development of defensive weapons. All these weapons are defensive, rather than offensive, Putin stressed. To explain the need to show the latest developments to the world, Putin referred to the history of relations between Russia and the United States. According to him, the USA had rejected all of Russia's proposals for cooperation on missile defense. "It would have created an atmosphere of confidence and it would have also guaranteed protection from mindless and globally dangerous single-handed use of nuclear weapons," Putin said. "Restrictions for missile defense systems would have made the potential aggressor vulnerable to a retaliatory strike," he said. According to Putin, Russia had long persuaded the United States not to ruin the ABM Treaty, "not to violate the strategic balance." "All was in vain. In 2002, the US unilaterally pulled out from the treaty," the president said. "But even after that, we had been trying for a long time to establish a constructive dialogue with them. We suggested we work together in the area to resolve concerns and preserve the atmosphere of confidence. At some point, it seemed that a compromise could be found. But no, all our suggestions, all of them, were rejected," Putin said. Therefore, several years ago Russia started working on state-of-the-art and second-to-none arms systems.First off, this is a new Sarmat intercontinental ballistic missile that can overcome any missile defense system and has no limitations on its range.
With a weight of 200 tons, the flight range of the Sarmat missile is larger than that of Bulava ICBM. The Voevoda (heavy intercontinental ballistic missile) has a flight range of 11,000 km, but the new system has practically no range limitations, Putin said after demonstrating a computer flight simulation of the Sarmat missile. He said that Sarmat can attack targets both via the North and the South Pole. "This is a very formidable weapon," the Russian president said.Russia also started developing weapons that did not use the ballistic trajectory at all. "We started developing new types of strategic weapons that do not use ballistic flight trajectories when moving to the target," the Russian president said. "Therefore, missile defense systems are useless and simply pointless against them," Putin said.It goes about the new missile with a small-sized nuclear superpowerful power plant, capable of maneuvering as long as possible bypassing ABM systems. The missile does not haму a name yet. It can be housed into a cruise missile, which will provide the latter with an unlimited range and invulnerability for missile and air defenses."A low-flying and low-visible cruise missile carrying a nuclear warhead of an unlimited range, unpredictable flight trajectory and a possibility to circumvent interception lines is invulnerable to all existing and prospective systems of both missile and air defense," Putin said.
Afterwards, Putin proceeded to the hypersonic air-missile complex "Kinzhal" ("Dagger"). High-precision hypersonic airborne missile complex "Kinzhal" has been put on combat duty in the Southern Military District of Russia from December 2017. "The trials of the new missile complex have been completed successfully. On December 1 2017, the complex was put on pilot-combat duty at airfields of the Southern Military District," the president added.