Climate change and wars

Michael Roberts Blog | April 09, 2022

As the ugly war in Ukraine drags on, with more lives lost and atrocities (apparently) committed, energy and food prices hit yet more highs.  The Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) of the UN publishes a monthly global price index.  The FAO Food Price Index reached yet another record high of 159.3 points in March, up 12.6% from February.

FAO Food price index
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China-India Relation: New Developments

[THIS ARTICLE IS POSTED HERE FOR NON-PROFIT, NON-COMMERCIAL, EDUCATIONAL PURPOSE. THE VIEWS EXPRESSED IN THIS ARTICLE ARE THAT OF ITS AUTHOR(S) AND DO NOT NECESSARILY REFLECT THE VIEW OF THE JOP]

Riot, Arson, Killings In Kazakhstan: Foreign Spy Agencies Behind, Claims Serbian President

Countercurrents Collective | January 07, 2022

Riots flared up in several cities of Kazakhstan on January 2. Later they erupted in other cities, including in Almaty, the largest city in the country, and on January 5, the riots snowballed into mass riots and violence, along with looting and attacks on state buildings. The rioters beheaded 2 police officers. At least 18 security officers were killed by the rioters. Over 3,000 people have been detained. 26 armed rioters have been killed. Government offices, police headquarters and stations, TV centers, police vehicles were torched.

Kazakhstan’s President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev has requested assistance of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), a post-Soviet security bloc. The first units of peacekeepers have started fulfilling their assigned tasks in Kazakhstan.

A state of emergency has been declared all across Kazakhstan.

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Russia-China Should Stand Firm In Rejecting Western Interference: Putin And Xi Agree

Countercurents | December 17, 2021

Presidents Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping agreed in a video call on Wednesday: Russia and China should stand firm in rejecting Western interference and defending each other’s security interests.

The two presidents’ conversation, eight days after Putin spoke to U.S. President Joe Biden in a similar format, underscored how U.S.-Europe hostility to Russia and China is bringing the two powerful countries closer together.

Under The Guise of ‘Democracy’ And ‘Human Rights’

“At present, certain international forces under the guise of ‘democracy’ and ‘human rights’ are interfering in the internal affairs of China and Russia, and brutally trampling on international law and recognized norms of international relations,” China’s state-run Xinhua news agency quoted Xi as saying.

“China and Russia should increase their joint efforts to more effectively safeguard the security interests of both parties.”

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U.S. And Ukraine, Only Two Countries Vote Against UN Resolution Condemning Nazism

Countercurents | December 17, 2021

The UN General Assembly has adopted a resolution condemning Nazism, neo-Nazism and all forms of racism, and the U.S. and Ukraine voted against it, while a few countries, mainly US allies, abstained. The resolution was co-sponsored by Russia.

On December 16, the UN General Assembly passed its annual resolution on “Combating Glorification of Nazism, neo-Nazism and other practices that contribute to fueling contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance” with 130 countries voting in favor and only two in opposition.

Out of a total 193 members countries, 51 countries including all members of the EU, Australia, New Zealand and Canada were among those who abstained from voting on the UN resolution asking members to eliminate all forms of racism and attempts to glorify Nazism. The resolution was passed with overwhelming support from the Third World countries.

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War in Ukraine? NATO expansion drives conflict with Russia

Aaron Maté

The Grayzone | December 06, 2021

Russia is seeking a legally binding pledge that NATO will stop expanding east, including to Ukraine. If the US refuses, is war next? Scholar and author Richard Sakwa analyzes the growing Russia-Ukraine conflict and how Russiagate fueled it.

Guest: Richard Sakwa. Professor of Russian and European politics at the University of Kent. His books include “Frontline Ukraine: Crisis in the Borderlands” and his latest, “Deception: Russiagate and the New Cold War.”

Video:

SOURCE: https://thegrayzone.com/2021/12/06/war-in-ukraine-nato-expansion-drives-conflict-with-russia/

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Mexico insists that the OAS must disappear

Últimas Noticias | August 29 2021

The country leads a proposal to create new integration mechanisms.

The Government of the President of Mexico, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, proposed this weekend to disappear the Organization of American States (OAS) and create a new regional body to suppress interventionism.

During the Seventh Plenary Meeting of Senators of the ruling National Regeneration Movement party (Morena), Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard reiterated that the OAS must disappear.

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Reflections on Events in Afghanistan

M. K. Bhadrakumar

Indian Punchline

The Taliban fighters posing for family photo and relaxing in the Presidential Palace, Kabul, Afghanistan, Aug 15, 2021

1. Collapse of the Afghan Army 

Social media reported that at the Kabul residence of the Afghan National Security Advisor Hamdullah Mohib who post-haste fled to Tajikistan on Saturday with President Ashraf Ghani, three Toyota Landcruiser SUVs were found stacked with American dollar bills. 

Mohib was the shadow king of Afghanistan. He controlled the country’s defence budget. In the coming year, he would have handled over $3 billion, which the US has earmarked as assistance for the Afghan armed forces. The Taliban spoiled his party. 

The mystery of the Afghan armed forces losing the will to fight is actually no mystery at all. The main reason has been the misappropriation of defence budget. In Ghani’s set-up, Mohib, his trusted flunky, controlled the Defence Ministry — not the Defence Minister — and he obviously did well for himself — and probably Ghani too. Time will tell. 

Read Full Article: https://www.indianpunchline.com/reflections-on-events-in-afghanistan/

2. The green shoots of politics are reappearing 

The explosion of life is unstoppable. The first buds are edging their roots from the dirt no sooner than Ashraf Ghani fled Kabul on Sunday, without telling anyone, carrying a massive loot of ill-begotten wealth stolen from his people. And the green shoots of political recovery are appearing. 

Tense and urgent care is needed. The region is rallying. Pakistan has taken the lead. 

On Sunday afternoon, a galaxy of senior Afghan politicians, largely drawn from the erstwhile Northern Alliance of the late 1990s, arrived in Islamabad to cogitate with the Pakistani leadership regarding the mainstreaming of the Taliban. The delegation comprised three top figures from Panjshir Valley, veteran Hazara leaders, the Jamiat-e Islami, Afghan Parliament (including, interestingly, the eldest son of the Tajik leader from Mazar-i-Sharif Mohammed Atta Noor.) 

Read Full Article: https://www.indianpunchline.com/reflections-on-the-events-in-afghanistan-2/

3. The Return of the Native 

There is immense curiosity about the Taliban’s first moves following the dramatic return to Kabul after two decades. The big question on everyone’s mind is whether the Taliban has ‘changed’ since the 1990s. Opinions vary. But, so far at least, there are no signs of a return of repressive authoritarian rule. 

The stunning press conference on Tuesday in Kabul by the Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid distinctly exuded an air of moderation and tolerance to dissenting voices. 

Read Full Article: https://www.indianpunchline.com/reflections-on-events-in-afghanistan-3/

4. The ‘X’ Factor in Kabul 

The Chinese commentaries vehemently reject the western claims of democratic transformation in Afghanistan. A conversation on Tuesday between the Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi and his American counterpart Antony Blinken (at the latter’s initiative) brought this out sharply.

Wang told Blinken that ‘facts have once again proved that mechanically copying an imported foreign model cannot readily be fitted to the use in a country with completely different history, culture and national conditions, and ultimately, is unlikely to establish itself.’

Wang said that without the support of people, ‘a government cannot stand’, and the use of power and military means to solve problems will only cause more problems, and ‘lessons in this respect deserve serious reflection.’ Wang underscored that Afghanistan’s open and inclusive political framework ought to be ‘in accordance with its own national situations.’ read more

Read Full Article: https://www.indianpunchline.com/reflections-on-events-in-afghanistan-4/

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Russia-China advance Asian roadmap for Afghanistan

Pepe Escobar

Kazakhstan’s Foreign Minister Mukhtar Tileuberdi, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, Tajik Foreign Minister Sirojiddin Muhriddin and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi pose for a family photo before a meeting of Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) Contact Group on Afghanistan, in Dushanbe, Tajikistan. Photo: Russian Foreign Ministry / Sputnik via AFP

The Shanghai Cooperation Organization meeting of Foreign Ministers on Wednesday in Dushanbe, the Tajik capital, may have been an under-the-radar affair, but it did reveal the contours of the big picture ahead when it comes to Afghanistan.

So let’s see what Russia and China – the SCO’s heavyweights – have been up to.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi laid out the basic road map to his Afghan counterpart Mohammad Haneef Atmar. While stressing the Chinese foreign policy gold standard – no interference in internal affairs of friendly nations – Wang established three priorities:

1. Real inter-Afghan negotiations towards national reconciliation and a durable political solution, thus preventing all-out civil war. Beijing is ready to “facilitate” dialogue.

2. Fighting terror – which means, in practice, al-Qaeda remnants, ISIS-Khorasan and the Eastern Turkestan Islamic Movement (ETIM). Afghanistan should not be a haven for terrorist outfits – again.

3. The Taliban, for their part, should pledge a clean break with every terrorist outfit.

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Turkish conflict with United States

Batko Milacic

The Saker Blog | July 15, 2021

Erdogan may have learned a good lesson in his dealings with Washington and Moscow.

The events in the Middle East have made a large number of interstate relations of the former “allies” very complicated due to the large-scale operation “Arab Spring”. After the failure of the original idea of creating the Great Middle East, a project in which the main role was played by Washington, in alliance primarily with the Gulf monarchies but also with Turkey, there was a great redefinition of relations within the axis.

Realizing that its interests in the region will not be satisfied in the alliance with the United States, Turkey turned another page in foreign policy, trying to satisfy its own interests, thus at the same time defying the synergistic policy of the NATO pact in the Middle East.

This act was a revolt within the NATO bloc itself. The most concrete results were seen with the realization of the “Turkish Stream” project with Russia and the purchase of modern S-400 anti-aircraft systems from Russia, despite numerous warnings from official Washington.

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