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Deep State tries to undermine Putin-Trump Summit, from Peter Myers

Deep State tries to undermine Putin-Trump Summit. Pussy Riot invade World Cup final

(1) US Deep State Hits Putin-Trump Summit With Preemptive Strike As Russiagate Fizzles Out

(2) WaPo: Summit with Putin is about appeasement; Trump is going to Sell Out

(3) NYT: Trump = Putin = Hitler

(4) Deep State trid to stop Summit with fabricated "Russiagate" - Paul Craig Roberts

(5) Trump got John Bolton to help arrange the Summit

(6) Pussy Riot claim responsibility for pitch invasion during World Cup final


(1) US Deep State Hits Putin-Trump Summit With Preemptive Strike As Russiagate Fizzles Out

by Robert Bridge

Sun, July 15, 2018

In order to save face over an investigation that has failed to produce a smoking gun regarding charges of collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, the US elite have opted to indict Russian intelligence officials for election meddling. Yet the evidence, once again, is missing in action.

Amid harsh criticism at home for its failure to provide proof of Russian collusion in the 2016 presidential election, at the very same time that Trump is preparing to meet with Vladimir Putin for a summit in Helsinki, the US Deep State has resorted to playing spoiler with the most overplayed hand in modern political history: the ‘Blame Russia’ card.

On Friday, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein announced indictments against 12 members of Russia’s Main Intelligence Directorate of the General Staff, also known as GRU, for "conspiring to interfere with the 2016 presidential election."

According to the 29-page indictment, the defendants devised fictional online personas to compromise computers affiliated with the Democratic National Committee, as well as Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta. The purported ‘hack’ led to the release of tens of thousands of stolen emails by WikiLeaks. These communications revealed what amounts to criminal behavior on the part of the DNC, including overt bias against Democratic presidential nominee Bernie Sanders in favor of Hillary Clinton, as well as evidence that Clinton was fed the questions to public debates against Donald Trump. Those very serious findings have been sidelined amid the storm known as Russiagate.

The Russian Foreign Ministry vehemently rejected the accusations, saying it was a coordinated effort by "influential political forces in the US that are opposed to the normalization of relations between our countries and have spread open slander for the past two years."

"The goal of this ‘information attack’ is obviously to spoil the atmosphere prior to the Russian-American summit," the ministry said, referring to the forthcoming meeting between Putin and Trump.

Indeed, the accusations leveled against the Russians ring hollow for several credible reasons.

First, the claims do not flush with WikiLeaks’ account as to how it came to possess the information. WikiLeaks founder and editor, Julian Assange, who has been living in the Ecuadorian embassy in London for over four years for fear of being extradited to the US, has denied that any state player was responsible for the "leak."

"We’re unhappy that we felt that we needed to even say that it wasn’t a state party," Assange told Sean Hannity of Fox News. "Normally, we say nothing at all."

"We have ... a strong interest in protecting our sources, and so we never say anything about them, never ruling anyone in or anyone out," Assange added.

Craig Murray, the former UK ambassador to Uzbekistan, who is now an affiliate of WikiLeaks, revealed that he knows the identity of the source.

"I know who leaked them," Murray said. "I’ve met the person who leaked them, and they are certainly not Russian and it's an insider. It’s a leak, not a hack; the two are different things."

For those who prefer to see evidence before they jump the gun and wrongly accuse someone - in this case a nuclear-armed power - they share the approach of Devin Nunes, chair of the House intelligence committee, who said:

"I’ll be the first one to come out and point at Russia if there’s clear evidence, but there is no clear evidence – even now. There’s a lot of innuendo, lots of circumstantial evidence, that’s it."

Second, according to an independent analysis carried out by a group called Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS), the DNS servers were compromised not through a ‘hack’ from some outside party, but rather through a ‘leak,’ that is, an ‘inside job.’

"After examining metadata from the "Guccifer 2.0" July 5, 2016 intrusion into the DNC server, independent cyber investigators have concluded that an insider copied DNC data onto an external storage device," the group, who counts among its members William Binney, a former NSA analyst turned whistleblower, wrote in a letter it sent to President Trump.

"Key among the findings … is the conclusion that the DNC data was copied onto a storage device at a speed that far exceeds an Internet capability for a remote hack. Of equal importance, the forensics show that the copying was performed on the East coast of the US"

The group says the mainstream media refuses to report on its findings.

Third, the FBI never had possession of the original DNC server to conduct its own forensics work, but relied instead upon a copy of texts provided by CrowdStrike, a cybersecurity company hired by the DNC - the target of the investigation – to conduct its internal investigation for the DNC. In other words, the possibility that the evidence was tampered with is certainly not beyond the realm of reality.

"We got the forensics from the pros that they hired which - again, best practice is always to get access to the machines themselves, but this my folks tell me was an appropriate substitute," then-FBI director James Comey told a House Intel session in January 2017.

Consider this: The FBI was happy to proceed with its investigation of Russia-Trump collusion without ever gaining access to the primary evidence, which were the DNC servers, allowing a clearly biased third party to distribute the goodies as it saw fit. Now compare that breathtaking disregard for professional standards with regards to the Clinton email investigation to the way the FBI manhandled Michael Cohen, Donald Trump’s personal attorney. On the suspicion that Cohen had made a payment to adult film star Stormy Daniels to hush up an alleged decades-old dalliance with Trump, FBI agents raided Cohen’s law office in midtown Manhattan in an effort to seize evidence. Now why in the world was similar force of action not taken against Hillary Clinton and the DNC, especially considering the significance of the case? Clearly there appears to be no small degree of political bias here.

Finally, the FBI itself is now under investigation for possible bias in the course of Russiagate investigation from at least two of its members Peter Strzok, deputy assistant director of the FBI and Lisa Page, a lawyer at the FBI who was also Strzok’s mistress. The lovers somehow managed to exchange some 50,000 text messages throughout the 2016 presidential election and first year of Trump in power, many of them containing fiercely anti-Trump sentiments.

Strzok was involved in the investigation into Clinton’s use of a private email server (no charges were brought against her, despite clearly breaking the law with regards to her handling of government communications), as well as the investigation into possible connections between Trump’s campaign and Russia (ongoing).

This is the sort of political climate that the Trump administration has been forced to deal with for almost two years – a non-stop full court rush from the Democrats.

And now, when there is a chance for the smallest breakthrough in US-Russia relations, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, rolls out charges against 12 Russian military officials, thereby severely polluting the atmosphere for the Putin-Trump summit.

Clearly, something has got to give one way or the other. The fate of relations between the world’s two premier nuclear powers can no longer be held hostage to poor-sport Democrats who simply do not know how to lose an election with grace.


(2) WaPo: Summit with Putin is about appeasement; Trump is going to Sell Out

Hardcore Hitler on Hitler in Helsinki

by C. J. Hopkins

Here it comes, the moment we’ve been waiting for, when Trump and Putin meet in Helsinki to officially launch the Destruction of Democracy, and very possibly the Apocalypse itself. That’s right, folks, once again, it appears we’re looking at the end of everything, because according to the corporate media, on July 16, 2018, Trump is probably going to disband NATO so that Putin can invade the Baltic states, then Germany, then the rest of Europe, and then presumably order an all-out thermonuclear strike on the United States, which will pretty much end civilization as we know it. Or perhaps the plan is to do away with NATO, withdraw all American troops from Poland, let Putin rape and pillage Western Europe, and then have North Korea nuke both coasts of the US mainland (and Canada, of course) so that a Putin-Nazified Middle Amerika will have carte blanche to exterminate the Mexicans and make women wear those “Handmaid” costumes, or some other ridiculously paranoid scenario, possibly involving Susan Sarandon as some kind of Putin-Nazi triple agent.

Tragically, the global neoliberal establishment is completely powerless to stop Trump and Putin from carrying out this evil scheme (whatever it turns out to be in the end), because even the US Intelligence Community has to obey the law, after all, and not do anything sneaky, or unethical, not even with the fate of democracy at stake. No, unlike the Russians, who go around blatantly poisoning people with novichok oatmeal more or less whenever they like, the global capitalist ruling classes’ hands are tied by their own integrity. All they can do is watch in horror as these two Hitlerian megalomaniacs destroy their entire global empire and establish a thousand-year Putin-Nazi Reich.

Thank God at least the corporate media are raising their collective voices in protest. In a recent piece in The Washington Post, Max Bergmann of the Center for American Progress warns that “this is a summit about appeasement, and we should be terrified that Trump is going to sell out America and its allies.” According to Bergmann, Trump might “accidentally” share state secrets with Putin, or promise to reduce support for our freedom-loving Ukrainian Nazis, or stop trying to overthrow the Syrian government so that Syria, with the help of Russia and Iran, can launch a sneak attack on Israel and drive “the Jews” into the sea. Worse still, Bergmann speculates, he might make “secret agreements” with Putin without telling the editors of The Washington Post, which … God help us all if that ever happened.

Not to be out-apocalypsed by The Post, Roger Cohen of The New York Times published a full-blown dystopian vision wherein Trump, Putin, Marine Le Pen, the AfD, and a variety of other globalist-hating Hitler-alikes form “the Alliance of Authoritarian and Reactionary States” (the “AARS”), disband the European Union and NATO, impose international martial law, and start ethnically cleansing the West of immigrants. Matteo Salvini and Horst Seehofer, decked out in full Putin-Nazi regalia, personally supervise the genocidal purges, which frightened Europeans come to support after Putin’s irresistible “fake news” bots brainwash them into believing that a little Russian girl named “Tatiana” has been abducted by Moroccan migrants off a beach along the Costa del Sol.

And as if that wasn’t horrifying enough to whip folks up into a mindless frenzy, The New York Times (which, let’s remember, is an extremely distinguished and respected newspaper, and not at all a cheap propaganda rag) produced this charming little animated film depicting Putin and Trump as … well, a couple of tongue-sucking, titty-pinching homos. I found this kind of weird at first, as I had thought such ugly anti-gay sentiment had disappeared from liberal society, but apparently it’s fine in Resistance circles to stigmatize your enemies as butt-humping queers in order to render them more repulsive in the eyes of your sophisticated, liberal audience. I did a little research, and it appears this “Hitler on Hitler” porno The Times produced is just the latest in a rather long line of Trump on Putin “homo” jokes, which are perfectly harmless when told by liberals, but when told by conservatives are homophobic hate crimes.

Look, I’m not a fan of poofter humor, or the corporate media, or the so-called “Resistance,” but neither am I a fan of Trump, nor am I, technically, an employee of Putin. What I am is a student of propaganda, media manipulation, and mass hysteria, and though I experienced the roll-out of the War on Terror, and assorted other propaganda campaigns (like Obama’s “Hope and Change” routine, Reagan’s “Morning in America” schtick, George H.W. Bush’s “New World Order,” and Bill Clinton’s “Third Way” happy horseshit), I have never witnessed anything like this. Most of those other propaganda campaigns at least bore some vague resemblance to reality. What we’re experiencing now is more akin to the kind of behavior that goes on in cults … where people are conditioned to surrender their reason (and, ultimately, to conform their perception) to whatever paranoid official narrative the leader of the cult has invented, and eventually to direct their fear and hatred, not only at the cult’s official enemy, but at anyone who questions the cult’s “reality.”

If you believe cults work because people are gullible, or stupid, you need to do some research. Cults work because their members are gradually conditioned to detach from “society” (i.e., the social body that conditioned them as children) and conform to the social body of the cult. This conditioning happens systematically, often over the course of years. Scientology cult members are not introduced to the “body thetans” story the day they walk in. Nor were the Manson girls ready to butcher a house full of people for Charlie at first … it took months of orgies, acid trips, and other de- and re-programming techniques to get them to buy into his paranoid prophecy of Imminent Racist Hippie Apocalypse.

Which is what I find so disturbing, presently. The ease with which the neoliberal ruling classes have programmed millions of Western consumers to believe a narrative no less ridiculous than Scientology’s “body thetans,” Manson’s “Helter Skelter” … or take your pick of any number of other cult narratives. The speed at which they switched from the War on Terror narrative to the Putin-Nazi narrative attests to the power of the corporate media and the neoliberal propaganda machine, generally. It really is an amazing achievement. In less than two years, they managed to condition a significant portion of the Western masses to forget about “the Islamic terrorists” that they had been conditioned to live in fear of, and to transfer their fear and hatred to Trump, and Putin, and anyone who appears to support them, or doesn’t sufficiently hate and fear them.

The ruling classes have achieved this feat by generating an ongoing series of episodes of mass hysteria. Most of them last a week or two, but their cumulative effect is powerful and enduring. Fake news, bots, travel bans, Confederate statues, neo-Nazi rallies, “novichok” attacks, kids in cages … anything the corporate media can use to channel more hatred toward Trump and Putin. None of these episodes are generated out of whole cloth. Obviously, the Russians are pursuing their interests, there is a white supremacist subculture in the United States, as there always has been, those kids were put in those cages, and so on … none of which began with Trump, or has anything exclusively to do with Putin, or triggered mass protests and widespread outrage until the neoliberal ruling classes and corporate media decided it should.

The upcoming summit is next on the list. It won’t be as juicy as the baby concentration camps, but it will do as far as reminding people that Trump is a secret Russian operative, or traitor (or quisling, as Paul Krugman would have it), conspiring with Putin to destroy democracy … that is, when they’re not fellating each other. Once the summit has come and gone, and democracy has miraculously survived, they will generate another round of Hitler hysteria, and Resistance cultists will spring into action like salivating Pavlov’s dogs, denouncing whatever unspeakable horror they had completely ignored for the previous eight years, jabbering about concentration camps, and ripping MAGA hats off teenagers. Purely for the sake of entertainment, I’m hoping it will be the secret Nazi code the Department of Homeland Security is embedding in its press materials, presumably to alert the Underground Network of Putin-Nazi Militias to stand by for imminent government takeover, the “securing of the future for white people and their children,” and the weeks of homosexual Odinist orgies that are sure to follow.

Seriously, though, the absolute genius of the ruling classes’ Putin-Nazi narrative (which rational people are underestimating) is that it is virtually impossible to criticize it without being labeled a Trump supporter, a Putin apologist, or a crypto-Nazi. Like Scientology’s Suppressive Persons (i.e., those who criticize Scientology), Putin-Nazi narrative deniers “seek to upset, continuously undermine, spread bad news about and denigrate” the cult. These are typically ex-cult members who no longer subscribe to official cult teachings, and are thus an existential ideological threat. Such persons are to be stigmatized and shunned, “so that others will know not to associate with them.” (Those quotes are from the Scientology website, but the same rules apply in every cult.)

Glenn Greenwald is probably the best example of a prominent Putin-Nazi narrative denier (and he is harassed for it on an daily basis), but an hour or two of research on Twitter will reveal the same dynamic at work against much less famous “pillow biting traitors.” Nor is it just fanatical cultists on Twitter. If you happened to google your humble narrator at any point during the last nine months, and were concerned that the people “People Also Search For” in my “Knowledge Panel” are mostly anti-Semites and “alt-right” types … well, I wrote about that in November of last year. (I have since repeatedly written to Google and advised them to occasionally alternate the anti-Semites they are associating me with, as using the exactly the same ones for months is lazy, and makes it rather difficult to blame their “search results” on some innocent algorithm.)

But what do I know? Maybe I’m just paranoid, and Google isn’t out to get me. Or maybe they know me better than myself, and I really am a crypto-Nazi, or some other kind of Suppressive Person, and democracy really is on the brink of disaster. After all, Glenn Greenwald just flew over to Moscow, and was selfied in the company of Edward Snowden, and Putin is poisoning random people in Amesbury for no apparent reason, and Susan Sarandon hacked the election, or dropped a Sarin bomb on Douma, or else Putin did, or maybe it was Xenu, or the Russians are about to take down the entire American fiberoptic network, and I almost forgot those four hundred white supremacist idiots who are planning to gather and bellow Nazi slogans at each other in Lafayette Square on August 12, and who are already receiving international coverage, because we can’t afford to ignore a few hundred racist morons in polo shirts … if we did, well, who knows what that might lead to? People might actually have a moment to pause and think about what’s going on, and why it’s going on, and who it serves, and try to put it all into some kind of perspective, before they react to the next Pavlovian stimulus the media waves in their faces. Ready? Good. Because here it comes …

C. J. Hopkins is an award-winning American playwright, novelist and satirist based in Berlin. His plays are published by Bloomsbury Publishing (UK) and Broadway Play Publishing (USA). His debut novel, ZONE 23, is published by Snoggsworthy, Swaine & Cormorant. He can reached at


(3) NYT: Trump = Putin = Hitler

Of Course, It Could Not Happen Here

By Roger Cohen

June 29, 2018

PARIS — The German government of Chancellor Angela Merkel falls, torn apart by demands from her conservative interior minister, Horst Seehofer, that refugees already registered in another European Union state be thrown out of Germany.

The xenophobic Alternative for Germany, or AfD, enters a new nationalist governing coalition. The party’s cry of "take back our country and our Volk!" echoes through Berlin.

Congratulatory calls pour in from the nationalist leaders of Hungary, the Czech Republic, Poland, Italy, Austria — and the United States. The American ambassador to Germany tweets his approval.

European Union leaders, buckling before the anti-immigrant tide, opt for the establishment of large detention centers for all migrants. Asylum seekers whose claims are verified will be admitted, while economic migrants merely in search of a better future will be evicted.

Riots erupt in these vast walled compounds. Rapid triage proves impossible. Conditions fester. Matteo Salvini, the rightist Italian interior minister, declares that a disastrous mistake has been made. The detention centers should have been located in North Africa. He defends his orders to the Italian Coast Guard to ignore calls for help from ships filled with migrants who, he says, may prove to be criminals and rapists.

The abduction of a Russian girl by Moroccan migrants at a Spanish beach resort causes an uproar. It turns out to be "fake news," the work of Russian cyber-geeks deployed for information warfare, but not before rightist leaders across the European Union have denounced the "foreign animals" holding "little Tatiana." Spain’s fragile government collapses.

Germany, Italy, the Czech Republic and Hungary announce that they are leaving the Schengen area and will reintroduce border and passport controls. The free movement of people, a cornerstone of the European Union, collapses. President Trump congratulates Europe on "coming to its senses at last." His ambassador to Germany tweets a hymn to "rediscovered, strong nations."

President Trump, arriving in Brussels for a NATO summit, explodes at the sight of the vast new $1.3 billion NATO headquarters building — "a scandal, a monstrosity, an insult to ordinary Americans."

He declares that NATO is no longer an alliance; it’s a cost center. The United States is paying too much. Why, he asks, are European armies not being used to round up "the immigrants who infest your countries and destroy your Christian cultures"?

Turning on his former friend President Emmanuel Macron he denounces the French defense of a united Europe as "weak, weak." Asked about the Trump-Macron relationship, a spokesman for Macron responds, "As we say in France, ‘les grands amours finissent toujours mal’— great loves always end badly."

The NATO summit proves more fractious than the recent G-7 summit in Canada. Trump rages and sulks. He pouts and pesters. He declares that just as he has stopped joint United States military exercises with South Korea because they are a provocation to "my friend Kim Jong-un," so he has decided, after consultation with "my friend Vladimir Putin" to withdraw from NATO military exercises in Poland and the Baltics because such exercises are a "provocation to Russia."

A briefing paper prepared by his national security adviser, John Bolton, is leaked. It defines the president’s strategic objective as "the destruction of the World Trade Organization, NATO and the European Union." Much progress, it notes, has been made toward all three goals. "The liberal democratic club is crumbling under the weight of its own decadence and political correctness."

President Putin, citing "crimes" against the Russian minority in Estonia, sends the Russian army into Estonia, a NATO member. He insists that there has been no "invasion" but that ethnic Russians in Estonia have justifiably taken up arms.

Satellite imagery of Russian troops crossing the border is dismissed by Trump as "fake news." Leading Republicans unanimously support his position.

NATO fails to invoke Article 5, which says an attack against any one NATO member must be considered an attack against them all. Allied governments abandon Estonia to its fate.

NATO disbands. Putin proposes replacing it with the Alliance of Authoritarian and Reactionary States, or AARS. Trump says he finds the idea "interesting."

Britain leaves the carcass of the European Union. Germany, under its rightist coalition, announces it is giving up the euro and readopting the deutsche mark. The eurozone collapses. The American ambassador to Germany tweets his delight.

The European Union disbands. Its flag is lowered at the French-German border, where work on a high-tech wall flanked by banks of barbed wire has begun. Trump and Marine Le Pen, the French National Front leader, tweet their approval. Germany announces a strategic alliance with Russia. The United States Supreme Court rules, on "national security" grounds, that due process is not required before expelling undocumented immigrants. Mass deportations begin. Trump tweets that due process "is overrated."

It could not happen. Of course, it could not happen. Only a fool would believe for a moment that it could.

You can follow me on Twitter (@NYTimesCohen) or join me on Facebook.

Follow The New York Times Opinion section on Facebook and Twitter (@NYTopinion), and sign up for the Opinion Today newsletter.

A version of this article appears in print on June 30, 2018, on Page A22 of the New York edition with the headline: Of Course, It Could Not Happen Here.


(4) Deep State trid to stop Summit with fabricated "Russiagate" - Paul Craig Roberts

Two Views of the Putin/Trump Summit

Paul Craig Roberts

The meeting that the Deep State strived to make impossible with fabricated "Russiagate" assertions and an orchestrated "investigation" by Mueller has now been set in place by no less that Deep State neocon operative John Bolton.  Patrick Lang explains how this came about: 

Many see benefits from the Putin/Trump meeting.  For example: 

Putin himself sees benefits in the meeting as does Trump.  Putin sees hope of improving relations between the two governments.  Of course, the "strained relations" are entirely due to Washington, which has demonized both Russia and Putin with false accusations and hostile acts such as illegal  sanctions. It was miscalculation for Washington to expect Russia to give up its Black Sea naval base to Washington's coup in Ukraine.  

What can an agreement be based on?  Bolton's position has been opposed to making any agreement with Russia or cooperating with Russia in any way.  From the neoconservative standpoint, Russia is in the way of US world hegemony.  As the neoconservative foreign policy doctrine states, it is a principle US goal to prevent the rise of any country that could serve as a check on American unilateralism.  Russia is a challenge to the American World Order because Russia stands in the way of the American unipolar world.

A successful summit will require Trump to reject this neoconservative doctrine.  If Trump can pull this off with Bolton sitting by him, Trump's critics will look very silly.  Do Bolton and the Deep State have a way of baking failure into the summit that will ensure the continuation of Russia's enemy status, thereby sustaining the enormous budget and power of the US military/security complex?  Is Trump a superman who can overcome this powerful vested interest about which President Eisenhower warned Americans in 1961?  How much stronger is this complex more than half a century later after being nourished by decades of Cold War and War on Terror?

Assad and no doubt Iran are convinced that negotiations with Washington are a waste of time.  Assad has concluded that "the problem with US presidents is that they are hostage to lobbyists. They can tell you what you want to hear, but they do the opposite. That's the problem, and it's getting worse and worse. Trump is a stark example. That's why when talking to the Americans, discussing something with them does not settle anything. There will not be any results. It's a simple waste of time."  

Assad's view has the evidence on its side.  One of Trump's first actions was to unilaterally pull out of the multi-nation Iran nuclear agreement.  There is no evidence that supports the hopeful Russian view.

It would be an interesting exercise to list all the agreements Washington has made over the course of US history and to calculate the percentage that Washington kept.  If Putin doesn't want to be taken for a ride, he should contemplate the words of Chief Joseph of the Nez Perce summing up his negotiations with Washington:  "I have heard talk and talk, but nothing is done. I am tired of talk that comes to nothing. It makes my heart sick when I remember all the good words and broken promises."


(5) Trump got John Bolton to help arrange the Summit

In a Stroke of Brilliance Trump Has Made Bolton His Point-Man on Putin Summit

Bolton is a big fan of WW3 but now he has a personal stake in making sure the meeting happens and produces results

Patrick Lang  Thu, Jun 28, 2018 |  

On a gestalt basis it seems to me from all the bits and pieces of information and rumor that DJT is attempting "The Deal of the Century!" (an episode or two of his soon to be award winning series on the subject of "The Greatest President.")

Russian cooperation in this is clearly needed.  Trump is blessedly lacking in ideological fervor.  His Deplorable base is also a bit short on ideology being focused on wages, prices, taxes and other everyday living issues.  Their patriotism expresses itself in devotion to the flag and the anthem and a willingness to serve in the armed forces, something increasingly absent in the "resistance." 

Trump has a free hand from his base to negotiate peaceful coexistence with Russia, but he nevertheless must successfully deal with the passion of the neocon wing of the Borg (foreign policy establishment).  They still swoon at the thought of the ongoing renewal of the Cold War.

John Bolton is an arch-neocon, a neocon's neocon.  Trump has sent him to Moscow to arrange an agenda, date and location for a meeting with Vladimir Putin.  IMO this is a stroke of genius.  What it does is put an enemy of good US-Russia relations in charge of arranging the schedule for discussions to improve US-Russia relations.  In LBJ's vulgarism, Bolton is going to be inside the tent peeing out rather than outside peeing in.  Having arranged the meeting, he will be personally invested in its success.  How sweet that is!

Trumps is IMO trying for a grand ME bargain to be achieved with Russian help:

1.  Peace in Syria in the context of abandonment of regime change.  Trump the pragmatist recognizes that the R+6 forces have won the civil war and, therefore he wishes to accept the sunk costs of previous American ineptitude in Syria and to walk away.  US Embassy Amman has signaled to the FSA rebels in SW Syria that they should not expect the US to defend them.  This is a traditional American stab in the back for guerrilla allies but the warning indicates to me that some group in the US Government (probably the CIA) has enough conscience to want to give warning.  As soon as that warning was issued the rate of surrenders to the SAA rose.

2.  The US has thus made it clear that the SAA and Russian forces in Syria have a free hand in the SW and it seems that Israeli air and missile attacks are unlikely against the SW offensive.  This has been insured through a Russian mandate that Hizbullah and IRGC dominated Shia militias stay out of the fight in Deraa and Quneitra Provinces.

3. The Egyptians have been talking to Hamas about their willingness to enter into a hudna (religiously sanctioned truce) with Israel.  Hamas has frequently offered this before.  Such truces are renewable and are often for 10 years.  Kushner's team thinks it has attained Natanyahhu's support for this.  The deal would supposedly include; a Gaza-Egyptian industrial zone in the area of Raffa, an airport, a seaport.  In return Hamas would be expected to police the truce from their side of the border.  People on SST who have deep access in Israel doubt the sincerity of apparent Israeli assent, but there is little doubt I think that DJT considers this part of the Grand Bargain he is attempting to forge.  

Nowhere in any of this is anything concerning Iran and I assume that regime change remains the policy.  Nor is there anything about Saudi Arabia and the UAE's mercenary manned war in Yemen.  Ah, well, pilgrims, everything in its time.


(6) Pussy Riot claim responsibility for pitch invasion during World Cup final

World Cup final interrupted by pitch invasion, Pussy Riot claims responsibilit

Updated July 16, 2018 12:42:19

Protest group Pussy Riot, long a thorn in Vladimir Putin's side, has claimed responsibility for four people who brought the World Cup final between France and Croatia to a brief halt by running onto the field dressed in police uniforms.

Stewards tackled three women and one man who charged onto the field in the 52nd minute of one of the world's most viewed sporting events.

Croatia defender Dejan Lovren pushed the man, helping a steward to detain him.

Before being hauled away, one of the women reached the centre of the field and shared a double high-five with France forward Kylian Mbappe.

"Hello everyone from the Luzhniki field, it's great here," Pussy Riot said on Twitter.

The political punk group released a statement calling for the freeing of political prisoners, an end to "illegal arrests" of protesters and for "political competition" to be allowed in Russia.

The statement also referenced the case of Oleg Sentsov, a vocal opponent of Russia's annexation of Crimea from Ukraine in 2014, who was sentenced in 2015 to 20 years for conspiracy to commit terror acts.

He denies the charges and has been on a hunger strike since mid-May.

PHOTO: Stewards eventually apprehended all of the pitch invaders. (Reuters: Darren Staples)

It was not clear if Pussy Riot used the uniforms as a ruse to enter Moscow's Luzhniki Stadium. The group could not immediately be reached for comment.

"The citizens in question were taken to the local police station," the Moscow branch of the Russian Interior Ministry said, without providing further details.

A video circulated on Russian social media after the match appeared to show two of the protesters, still in police uniforms, being interrogated at a police station.

External Link: Tweet interrogation video

Internet TV channel Dozhd identified the male protester as Pyotr Verzilov, one of the group's most prominent members.

Under barking queries from a man off camera, Mr Verzilov says: "I am for Russia, just like you — if you are for Russia."

PHOTO: Russian President Vladimir Putin was at the World Cup final and has long been a target for Pussy Riot's activism. (Reuters: Kai Pfaffenbach)

"I sometimes wish it was 1937," the man off screen says, referring to the year in which Stalinist purges were at their height.

External Link: Pussy Riot tweet: NEWS FLASH! Just a few minutes ago four Pussy Riot members performed in the FIFA World Cup final match — ”Policeman enters the Game”

Pussy Riot rose to global prominence after several balaclava-covered female members sang a raucous song denouncing Mr Putin in Moscow's main cathedral.

Two of them, including Mr Verzilov's wife, served nearly two years in prison for the protest.

Mr Putin was watching the Cup final alongside his French and Croatian counterparts and FIFA president Gianni Infantino, among other dignitaries.

France won the game 4-2.

FIFA did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The event's local organising committee said it did not have further information.

The protest was briefly shown on international TV broadcasts, even though FIFA policy is usually to cut away when fans and others run onto the field.


-- Peter Myerswebsite: