Brief Wake-Up and Read

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Anne Applebaum on Democracy and those who mean to destroy it –>

All of us have in our minds a cartoon image of what an autocratic state looks like: There is a bad man at the top. He controls the police. The police threaten the people with violence. There are evil collaborators, and maybe some brave dissidents.

But in the 21st century, that cartoon bears little resemblance to reality. Nowadays, autocracies are run not by one bad guy but by networks composed of kleptocratic financial structures, security services, and professional propagandists. The members of these networks are connected not only within a given country but among many countries. The corrupt, state-controlled companies in one dictatorship do business with their counterparts in another. The police forces in one country can arm, equip, and train the police forces in another. The propagandists share resources—the troll farms that promote one dictator’s propaganda can also be used to promote the propaganda of another—and themes, pounding home the same messages about the weakness of democracy and the evil of America.

Applebaum, Anne. “The Bad Guys Are Winning”. The Atlantic, November 15, 2021.

Bandits and Fulani Land Pirates amuck in Kaduna State and assorted communities in Nigeria –>

“Bandits, herdsmen kill 22 in Kaduna State, Taraba, Vanguard, November 11, 2021.


Sudanese dictatorship takes a big bite out of Ethiopia –>

Since the Sudanese military was willing to lose millions in aid and support from the United States by knocking out prospects for a transitional civilian government, they are unlikely to be phased by the White House’s call for peace and stability. If anything, Sudan’s military may be more emboldened to deepen its foothold over al-Fashaga as they no longer have U.S. monetary support on the line. If the conflict worsens, Egypt, Eritrea, and other African nations are likely to pick sides, squandering the chances for stability in the Horn of Africa.

Carlin, Maya. “How Sudan Exploited Ethiopia’s Tigray Conflict.” National Interest, November 15, 2021.

Having won Afghanistan by force of arms, the Taliban now find themselves embattled and lost –>

If the widespread impression was that the Taliban was a radical Islamic group, (which it is) it is being challenged by an even more extreme group, the Islamic State of Khorasan (ISK). Sporadic attacks, claimed by the ISK, has claimed lives and kept the ruling dispensation on the tenterhooks.

Within the Taliban itself, there appears to be a tussle between hardliners (aligned to Pakistan) like Sirajuddin Haqqani and moderates like Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, who don’t have a problem having a relationship with India and Russia. The differences within the ruling government have prevented the Taliban from coming out with a clear vision on its way ahead other than reiterating that its interpretation of the Islamic Sharia will be the basis for the rule of law, social behaviour, and governance in the country.

Murthy, KS Dakshina, “Afghanistan under Taliban in danger of slipping into ‘black hole’.” The Federal, November 16, 2021.

Coalition appeals for aid in the interest of saving Afghan lives from Taliban targeting –>

WASHINGTON (AP) — A coalition of organizations working to evacuate people who could be targeted by the Taliban rulers in Afghanistan appealed Monday for more assistance from the U.S. government and other nations as conditions deteriorate in the country. / Members of the AfghanEvac Coalition met in a video call with Secretary of State Antony Blinken to press the case for additional resources to help tens of thousands of people get out of Afghanistan, now faced with a deepening economic and humanitarian crisis in addition to a precarious security situation following the U.S. withdrawal.

Fox, Ben. “US urged to help more people escape Taliban-led Afghanistan.” AP News, November 14, 2021.

Well, there above is a bit of morning curiosity over coffee. Anne Applebaum fighting for democracy against autocratic and feudal power worldwide; Nigeria riven with bandits and “land pirates” as it fails to rise tot he defense of its people as horrors take place; a Taliban leadership struggling to “win the peace” having bulled its way into power with violence . . . — good morning!


I maintain a “reading page” on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/BackChannels .

I awoke one day not too long ago in a medieval version of the United States of America with a Medieval Internet Commons, passionate mobs Far Out Left and Far White or Strident Right, and loaded with the zealots of Olde Institutions, generally religious or, well, Far Out, man.

And I awoke one day to . . . Kidults, preening and self-indulgent, bent on profit or glorious decadence and dissolution, and then I got to read about Medieval Absolute Power (the Russian Way) and Modern Democracy (see “Rumor Control,” CISA,Gov) and realized the would-be “MODERN” — culturally inclusive, modern, middle-of-the-aisle but also the avant garde “politicos” of a 21st Century — or a 22nd Century “Newest World” — compassionate, loving, and prudent and responsible had a fight for the future on their hands. Well, there’s no need to erase the past or start over if I / you / we choose to stand on the shoulders of giants for a good look ahead.

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Nigeria: A Note on Community Self-Defense and Nigerian National Purpose

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Many people in the country generate their own electricity, pump their own water, arrange private education for their children and so on.

They would also gladly defend themselves against armed attackers.

But, under Nigeria’s laws, it is now impossible to purchase a firearm. No matter how determined an individual might be, they cannot defend themselves with just bare hands and bravery.

Nwaubani, Adaobi Tricia. “Viewpoint: Self-defence not the answer to Nigeria’s kidnap crisis.” BBC News, February 25, 2021.

When, therefore, government proves incapable or unwilling to protect everyone equally, communities must exercise a duty of collective self-defence. The alternative is to suffer voluntary liquidation. In the first six months of 2021, over 6,000 people were reported killed in atrocity violence across Nigeria. 

Odinkalu, Chidi Anselm. “Nigerian law protects right to self-defence: Communities have duty to exercise it.” Vanguard, September 3, 2021.

Nigeria’s bandits and gangs, Fulani Land Raiders, and assorted whatnot bear arms (also explosive and petrol) for their barbaric and tawdry businesses. Nigeria’s Christian communities and others lay bare before them while President Buhari’s government works on rising to the challenge of defending Nigerian communities in their totality, and while it seems corruption must arm the evil — how does so much firepower get through to the worst of the worst? — one may wonder about the complicity — the “voluntary liquidation” — of the victims and their communities and relations.

Possibilities for the Good

Alarms and Barriers: advanced separate-system security communications; spotters; tripwires.

Arms, Bombs, and Edges: warn; repulse; surprise.

Community and State Security Co-Location: On-site partnership between state security and community leaders with zero-time response to assault; secondary government-controlled ready-secret community volunteer units.

Internal Intelligence & State Issues

When it comes to arms and most everything else that has to be smuggled to get where it needs to be, someone knows who’s sellin’ — and someone also knows who’s buy’n.

How is that knowledge come by?

Find an analyst in Nigeria’s State Security Service and ask.

The escapades of bandits, kidnappers, and raiders have not been subtle in the least, nor has their provisioning gone unnoticed.

$$$ & Nigeria’s National Coherence and Cohesion

Although partisan presses emphasize religious aspects of Nigerian conflict, especially involving the Muslim Fulani and Christian villages, one might suggest a more modern world, deeply corrupt and not very religious at all, has come to Nigeria and for bad good reasons ferries (and launders) The Money out to and through “rule-of-law” locations amenable to, well, doing business with not too much of conscience (or law) getting in the way. Whatever the motives may be for moving money offshore and through “shells” developed to hide owner identity, Nigerians would seem shorted as regards both domestic re-capitalization and spending, not that receiving foreign banks, businesses, and states would object to their own good fortune.

One might ask why Nigerians, among others, insist on either fighting archaic medieval wars in 2021 or on experiencing and framing conflicts as such when, in fact, the common denominator from field raids to high office would seem that so-called “root of all evil”, ne, money.

Who is fighting over such an immense thing as the character or nature of God?

While medieval belief sustain absolute power, modern leaders have seen an abyss before them created by demystification and the promotion of reason and by disappointment and the raising of questions that power has never been able to answer or resolve. Before reason and science and now 21st Century technology breakthrough, history’s medieval and primitive inertia would seem to decay and leadership lose its luster especially where it preys on the populations looking to it for improved Qualities and Living, financial and personal security foremost and equally distributed and distributed by merit.

Absence of governance, impoverishment, the presence of interests gaming for the control and plundering of resources in the name of self, clan, family, and tribe may better account for violence welling up from the base between ambition and desperation.

Nigerian National Identity

My own nation, the United States of America, has been riven by agitprop, foreign (e.g., Russian “Active Measures”) and domestic (Partisan drum beaters Far Out Left and Far Strident Right), the unworkable politics of ethnic, gender, and racial identity as cause, and breathtaking disparities in national lifestyle–the gutter (say, Kensington Avenue, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) looks awfully low while the priciest of mansions and penthouses sail off in the clouds fully immune, so it seems, to more earthy surrounds. However, should one ask a moderately educated American adult, “What is an American?” most, so one might hope, would define an American as dedicated to upholding the principles and values laid out in the United States Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the full body of compiled – and compiling – national law. Cognizance of and devotion, and respect for essential American ethics, law, principles, and values remain in the heart. Most often, America’s domestic fighting revolves around injustices perceived in light of the country’s essential humanist and secular legal and social ideals and practical political and social ends.

Americans will not fight en masse over religion (which and whose? For all are here) at this time.

Americans will fight — and prove so every day — for their interests, private and public, in light of founding principles and rights.

Nigerians?

Who is Nigerian?

What is a Nigerian?

Who aspiring to power or in power is building a just and modern Nigeria far above parochial business, clan, and tribal interests?

Is there an ideal Nigeria waiting for Nigerians to achieve and secure it?

Last year at about this time (October 20, 2020), Nigerian forces turned their guns on protesters at Lekki Toll Gate. For whom did they kill a dozen Nigerian youth? And for what? Feudal honor? Their jobs? Money?

I believe Nigerians decent but it appears some in business and in power at high levels abuse ideals, their own privileges, and, ultimately, trust of a nation.

AFP. “At least 40 killed in attacks in Nigeria’s Kaduna state.” Africa News, September 28, 2021.

Amnesty International. “#EndSars Movement: From Twitter to Nigerian Streets.” n.d.

Asadu, Chinedu. “Dozens killed and abducted in Nigeria’s north.” AP News, September 30, 2021 .

Busari, Stephanie. “‘He died in my arms.’ Twelve months on, a mother’s agonizing wait to find out why her son died at Lekki toll gate.” CNN, October 19, 2021.

Busari, Stephanie, Nima Elbagir, Gianluca Mezzofiore, Katie Polglase. “‘They pointed their buns at us and started shooting’: How a bloody night of bullets and brutality quashed a young protest movement.” CNN, November 19, 2020.

Campbell, John. “The U.S. Justice Department and Kleptocracy in Nigeria.” CFR, July 19, 2017.

Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999. WIPO Lex.

Duerksen, Mark. “Nigeria’s Diverse Security Threats.” Africa Center for Strategic Studies. March 30, 2021.

Fawole, Rotimi. “The Paradise Papers: When are offshore financial centres okay?” The Guardian, Nigeria, August 15, 2019.

Fitzgibbon, Will. “Secret Documents Expose Nigerian Oil Mogul’s Offshore Hideaways.” ICIJ, July 25, 2016.

Gladstone, Rick and Megan Specia. “Nigeria’s Police Brutality Crisis: What’s Happening Now.” November 14, 2020.

Ibrahim, Raymond. “The Jihadist Genocide of Christians in Nigeria Intensifies.” Gatestone Institute, October 10, 2021.

Jones, Mayeni. “Nigeria’s #EndSars protests: What happened next.” BBC News, October 7, 2021.

Mangut, Ajeck, Angela Dewan, and Nada Bashir. “Nigeria threatens CNN with sanctions but provides no evidence Lekki toll gate investigation is inaccurate.” CNN, November 20, 2020.

News Agency of Nigeria. “Killings: Military warns Plateau residents against self-defense.” Pulse, August 30, 2021.

Obado-Joel, Jennifer. “The Challenge of State-Backed Internal Security in Nigeria: Considerations for Amotekun.” Washington, D.C.: RESOLVE Network, 2020.

Onuzo, Chibundu. “How Nigerian ‘corruption’ is a cautionary tale for the UK.” The Guardian, April 29, 2021.

Onyiliogwu, Ike, “Money Laundering by Politically Exposed Persons in Nigeria: Consequences and Combative Measures.” Philadelphia, La Salle University Digital Commons, 2018.

Page, Matthew T. “Dubai Property: An Oasis for Nigeria’s Corrupt Political Elites.” Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, March 19, 2020.

Panchal, Krishna. “The Poverty Capital of the World: NIGERIA.” Borgen Magazine, August 28, 2020.

Sahara Reporters. “Pandora Papers: Investigation Reveals How Nigeria’s Ex-Governors, Minister Kept N117 Billion Assets in Two Tax Haven Banks.” October 11, 2021.

Shirbon, Estelle. “UK seeks to seize $39 million from lawyer who helped corrupt Nigerian politician.” Reuters, September 24, 2020.

Shirbon, Estelle, Chijioke Ohuocha. “Nigerian growth lags Africa, poverty rising, says World Bank.” Reuters, June 15, 2021.

Tanko, Aliyu. “Nigeria’s security crises – five different threats.” BBC News, July 19, 2021.

U.S. Department of Justice. “U.S. Repatriates over $311.7 Million in Assets to the Nigerian People that were Stolen by Former Nigerian Dictator and His Associates.” May 4, 2020.

Wikipedia. “Americanism”.

Wikipedia. “Constitution of Nigeria”.

Wikipedia. “Informal economy”.

Wikipedia. “Poverty in Nigeria”.

Wikipedia. “System D”.

Zolov, Vladislav. “Galactica Star arrested in corruption case to go under the hammer.” It Boat, March 26, 2019.


Posted to YouTube October 10, 2021.

While it is not a crime for private individuals to set up offshore companies, Nigeria’s law forbids public officials from doing so. According to Transparency International, the failure of the President, Major General Buhari (retd.), to act over past disclosures like the Panama Papers has deepened the culture of impunity. Auwal Rafsanjani, Executive Director, Nigeria’s TI chapter, says the regime needs to investigate the Pandora Papers revelations irrespective of the political affiliation of the individuals. He adds that the government should equip the Code of Conduct Bureau with staff and resources to adequately scrutinise officials’ asset declarations.

TI’s observation of Buhari’s inaction is not surprising as his avowed anti-corruption war is gradually becoming a charade. \

Punch Editorial Board. “Pandora Papers and Nigeria’s hidden wealth.” Punch, October 12, 2021.

It is not against the law to secretly buy British properties using anonymous offshore companies. Finance Uncovered has seen no evidence in the Pandora Papers that money used to buy houses or apartments in the UK represents the proceeds of corruption or other criminality.

Indeed, many specialist advisers have routinely recommended clients invest in this manner to legally avoid tax.

Bowers, Simon, Lionel Faull, Purity Mukami. “Pandora Papers: The secret London properties of Nigeria’s elite.” Finance Uncovered, October 6, 2021.

Posted to YouTube, October 27, 2021, this video covers both the Lekki Toll Gate slaughter and the Far Right assault and insurrection that brought violence to the America’s Capitol on January 6, 2021.

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QOLs: Qualities of Living

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If the nations wish to compete, may they do it in these dimensions.


QOL: Qualities of Living

Biological: Environmental and Human Health

Financial: Actualizing, Beyond Basic, Individual and Family Sufficiency

Psychological: High Degrees of Freedom, Positive Outlook, Potential for Fulfillment, Good Self-Concept, Reliable Community and Personal Security

Spatial: Bases and Boundaries x Person x Family x Clan x Tribe x Nation x Ethnic x Transnational Cultures / Defenses and Retreats

Spiritual: Broad Awareness, Consciousness, Conscience x Comprehension of Community and Personal Place in Time


I’ve approached this topic a few times, but here I wanted this simplest reduction, at least up top.

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Sudan in a Flash

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The gap between any nation’s stability and the onset of substantial instability might be, oh, three seconds: “You are under arrest”; “We are detaining you”; “Please come with us.”

Add the boots, troops, and guns.

What is power in a weak state?

Evidently, power is the power to cut communications, detain officials, including the head of state, and kill protesters with impunity.


In Khartoum’s twin city Omdurman, security forces stormed the state radio and television headquarters and detained a number of employees, following which the state TV had been reportedly playing patriotic songs and showing images of the Nile. Internet connectivity has been suspended.

Kulkarni, Pavan. “Sudan: More than a million people take to the streets against coup.” Green Left, October 26, 2021.

Related Online

AFP. “Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, the general who leads Sudan.” France24, October 25, 2021.

France24 Live. “Sudan military coup: Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, the general who took power.” October 26, 2021.

Dahir, Abdi Latif and Declan Walsh. “Sudan’s Military Seizes Power and Fires on Protesters: News Updates.” The New York Times, October 25, 2021.

Dahir, Abdi Latif. “Troops opened fire on pro-democracy protesters who flooded the streets, with at least two reported killed.” The New York Times, October 25-26, 2021.

Kulkarni, Pavan. “Sudan: More than a million people take to the streets against coup.” Green Left, October 26, 2021.

Kwai, Isabella. “Who is Abdalla Hamdok, the Sudanese prime minister detained in a military coup?” The New York Times, October 25, 2021.

Smith, Elliot. “Sudan’s military has seized power in a coup. Here’s what you need to know.” CNBC. October 26, 2021.

Wikipedia. “Abdel Fattah al-Burhan”.


KBC, October 26, 2021.

Forbes, October 25, 2021.

DW, October 25, 2021.

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FTAC: A Jot on Historical Revisionism

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I hate REVISIONISM!

It’s a good measure for what is despotic.

Whoever or whatever it was — or remains — if it was evil, we should collectively appreciate its import, ameliorate its damage, if comparatively recent, and pack it away not to be repeated if the semblance of the same may be prevented or damped.

Related: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Why_Orwell_Matters


As lies are told to hide something or to get something, those who counsel the excising of history — erasure of the past, in essence — would seem most of all ashamed of themselves and sensitive to their own hidden predilections for control and conquest. Only the pulling down of the despot’s statue at the time of the revolution proves liberating and signal of liberation. Yanking old generals off their pedestals? That’s something else.

Related Online

Byfield, Chris. “William Shatner dismantled wokeism in stunning outburst. ‘Utterly ridiculous’.” Express, October 14, 2021.

Weiss, Bari. “We Got Here Because of Cowardice. We Get Out With Courage.” Commentary, November 2021.

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Trump’s America in Retrospect: Russian Real Estate Entanglements

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From Correspondence


Of course, everyone enjoys the money! So better here in America — or with an American, albeit not a very good one as stood beside American ideals and rule of law — than elsewhere and someone else. I’ve been shrugging away these themes for a while for being too large for any one person to address and seek to ameliorate. Those involved are the wealthy of the world, and no matter how they made their money, they’re powerful. 😦

Narcissistic leaders want to create, sustain, and leave for prosperity their own great image; they also want to remain in power without price, and for that, some, as dictators do, become as if forces of nature, heartless, unstoppable, ruthless.


Associated with the Conversation

We had been chatyping about DJT, the inferential references to corruption, money laundering, and Russian connections came to mind, so one look-see on the web and a five minutes later I had a starting overview on that subject, which is here listed below (with additions).

True take: free-wheeling American real estate business rides on ambition, caveat emptor, and wealth with the freedom of the seller’s not having to look too closely at The Money, which is in the end and for everyone involved and beyond . . . just money — but oh such a lot of money!

Call corruption the “Cancer of States” and consider that behind “dirty money”, however laundered, lays not only the wreckage of families, government, and lives but an intense leveraging of business and political power. The term “too big to fail” comes to mind, for the measurement of occult wealth, i.e., the contribution of illegal (at worst) and questionable (at best) “fund raising” seems to me an issue avoided by power itself, not that the subject has gone unnoticed.

The informal economy, also known as the underground economy or the black market, makes up a significant portion of the overall economy. It is estimated to be as much as 36 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP) of developing nations and 13 percent of developed countries’ GDP.1 However, as an article by Economist Paulina Restrepo-Echavarria in The Regional Economist points out, measuring the informal economy is quite difficult.

Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. “How to Measure the Black Market.” May 18, 2015.

For probably all the right ambitious, emotional, and practical reasons, most may shrug off the little bit of grease and leaning — the gifts, the open arms, the warm handshakes; the aggressive marketing or “salesmanship” that nudges with a little bit of caution — that gets business done while facilitating access to new opportunities and relationships — but with too much of the same, the bodies, destroyed businesses and careers, and ruined lives show up visibly everywhere, and that little bit of smarmy activity becomes a tangled and suffocating web.

The matter of observing and measuring atrocious, ruthless, and vicious business behavior and its behavioral, economic, and social effects on societies not accustomed to their own dumb and hapless enslavement through malicious handling would seem another matter, and most certainly a matter of keen interest to economists, ethicists, and the public at large. With that in mind, one might suggest that Moscow’s “Mafia State” and Trump’s egregious approach to those apparently not fit to shine his shoes has set off for general rule the presence of some global and criminal or near-criminal nobility far above the constitutions, interests, and laws of states and their constituencies.

Related Online

Davidson, Adam. “Where Did Donald Trump Get Two Hundred Million Dollars to Buy His Money-Losing Scottish Golf Club?” The New Yorker, July 13, 2018.

Frank, Thomas. “Secret Money: How Trump Made Millions Selling Condos to Unknown Buyers.” Buzzfeed, January 12, 2018.

Kumar, Anita. “Real estate mogul Trump sold condos to regime-connected Venezuelans.” Politico, August 4-8, 2019.

Landay, Jonathan. “Sales of Trump properties suggestive of money-laundering: researcher.” Reuters, January 18, 2018.

Layne, Nathan, Ned Parker, Svetlana Retter, Stephen Grey, Ryan McNeill. “Russian elite invested nearly $100 million in Trump buildings.” Reuters Investigates, March 17, 2017.

Related Online and A Little to the Side of The Donald

Craig, Susanne, Jo Becker, Jesse Drucker. “Jared Kushner, a Trump In-Law and Adviser, Chases a Chinese Deal.” The New York Times, January 7, 2017.

Goodman, Ryan, Julia Brooks. “Timeline on Jared Kushner, Qatar, 666 Fifth Avenue, and White House Policy.” Just Security, March 17, 2020.

Helmore, Edward. “Jared Kushner’s company under renewed scrutiny over Chinese and Israeli deals.” The Guardian, January 8, 2018.

IMDB. Netflix: “Dirty Money: Slumlord Millionaire”, Season 2; Episode 3.

Kwong, Jessica. “Jared Kushner-Linked Chinese Executive Sentenced to Prison for Massive Fundraising Fraud.” Newsweek, May 10, 2018.

Lash, Herbert. “Kushner, Anbang end Manhattan tower talks, other talks emerge.” Reuters, March 29, 2017.

Luhn, Alec. “Who is Sergei Gorkov, the powerful Russian banker who met Jared Kushner?” The Guardian, June 3, 2017.

Wikipedia. “Dirty Money (2018 TV series).

On Russia’s Mafia State and Donald Trump’s Business History

Galeotti, Mark. “Gangster’s paradise: how organised crime took over Russia.” The Guardian, March 23, 2018.

Johnston, David Cay. “Just What Were Donald Trump’s Ties to the Mob?” Politico, May 22, 2016. As a companion to Cay’s piece: Kruse, Michael. “The Muckraker Who Tormented Trump.” Politico, January 20, 2017.

Nevzlin, Leonid. “The Result of 20 Years of Putin: Russia as a Mafia State.” IMR: Institute of Modern Russia, January 24, 2020.


While the Russian mafia is a favorite antagonist of Hollywood screenwriters, it is thought to be all-but-defunct in reality. After all, when was the last time anybody in the U.S. heard about major Russian mafia activity?

The criminal underworld is thriving like never before in Europe. The individuals and groups are not random; they are highly organized, well-funded and responsible for rising levels of cyberterrorism, money laundering and murder. Fortune Magazine lists the Solntsevskaya Bratva, alternately known as the Russian mafia, as the largest organized crime group in the world and it ranks above both the Japanese Yakuza and the Mexican Sinaloa cartel in terms of overall revenue. More interesting than its current standing is how it achieved its status. From a culture that encouraged crime to a government that aided and abetted it, the Russian Federation has become a hotbed for a growing criminal underworld.

McIlvenna-Davis, Dylan. “Gangs and Gulags: How Vladimir Putin Utilizes Organized Crime to Power his Mafia State.” Berkeley Political Review, October 9, 2021.

Posted by CNBC to YouTube July 30, 2021.

Related regarding the 2020 American Election

Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency. “Election Security VS. Reality.” Last updated September 23, 2021.

July 16, 2018.

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FTAC: Aghanistan, Corruption, and Greed

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While the Modern West most certainly appears to be at war with feudal-medieval, narcissistic, and totalitarian forces and tendencies worldwide, there seems a part in which the Modern face off with the Modern over the management of corruption and greed. This note From the Awesome Conversation may be accompanied by a minimum of inline or separate references, but I do believe each claim or implication easily substantiated with a little bit of online research effort on the reader’s part.


From the Awesome Conversation (Now Growing Old as I Grow Old) 🙂

Inline URLs have been added to the original plain text.

***

HE was thinking “Putin”, whose black market provided the Taliban with arms and materiel and whose white market sells defense goods to allies on Afghanistan’s border. https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2021/08/20/trump-peace-deal-taliban/ Grand Game thinking and Rare Earth Minerals have been a part of this tug-of-war between Moscow and Washington as has been the intent of “updating” Islam or Islamists hewing to impossibly archaic beliefs and execrable behavioral standards. Russia now has the Taliban where it has needed them — in power, out in the open, and free of any kind of support from Washington. 🙂

Moscow’s “Absolutism”, “Active Measures”, “Hybrid Warfare”, and Medieval “Realpolitik” have been somewhat proven against EU/NATO, which by “Reflexive Control” (see “Business Insider, Zawahiri, Russia“) has itself been pushed toward the “New Nationalism” with Hungary, Italy, Poland, and Turkey motivated most of all to march forward into the feudal-medieval past.

Add the arc of Soviet / post-Soviet alliances x Areas of Control x Regions of Influence, and one may glimpse the persistently barbaric and feudal world Moscow has in mind for the global future.

Not only Zawahiri but Jeffrey Epstein as well had Moscow stays in Russia], and the medieval emphasis on “kompromat” — and potential public embarrassment — may have come through most clearly during the Trump Administration (and Trump especially had relationships involving criminal elements and substantial sums of Russian money — start with Craig Unger on all of that).

One more note on Afghanistan: the fate of that state would seem inseparable from corruption and greed on the part of all involved, from the native warlords to American industries fueled by Big Defense contracts and supported by complex battle systems requiring the cooperation and presence of ready assets, especially air-related, and the administrative and technical abilities needed to run and sustain operations.

***


Related Online

Kazmin, Amy, Benjamin Parkin, Katrina Manson. “Low morale, no support and bad politics: why the Afghan army folded.” Financial Times, August 15, 2021.

Wilkie, Christina. “‘9/11 millionaires’ and mass corruption: How American money helped break Afghanistan.” CNBC, September 10, 2021.

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A Glimpse of America’s Deepest Undertow

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If it’s happening here in the United States of America, the same is probably happening where you live, more or less — and “less” only if kept more effectively out of sight.

As an artist — “Writer, Musician, Photographer”, so I have billed myself a lifetime — I’m more accustomed to the idea of “bohemia” than either accustomed to it, much less inured to it. Quite petite bourgeoisie, Internet, tweeds, and all, albeit in a very small space patched with a window air conditioning unit, sigh, I would think downward and outward much, much worse — and it is. Here follow a few links to how American life looks from where it has bottomed out on the streets. While taking it in, I would suggest also a spare meditation on corruption, greed, heartlessness, ruthlessness, and vanity as the ambitions, desires, dreams, impressions, self-concepts and the concomitant or later abuse, narcotics, under-employment, and unemployment and wholesale derailment have never come out of nowhere.

AML Films. Misc. interviews, addicts, homeless, prostitutes.
Glink. “The Dark Reality of Los Angeles.” September 4, 2021.
Horvath, Mike. Invisible People. Interviews with homeless.
Kimgary. Misc. “Streets of Philadelphia, Kensington Ave. Story”. Silent slow-motion coverage of a $1 billion fentanyl and heroin market.
Laita, Mark. Soft White Underbelly. Interviews.
RealWomen/RealStories
Rodriguez, Frank. Morals Over Money. Misc. associated with Kensington Avenue, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Democratic, free, and modern societies come equipped with extraordinary public concern, compassion, moral latitude, and political obligation with open discussion, all of which lends itself to the vibrancy and vitality of energetic national cultures. Issues at the base may not have to do half so much with “morals”, not at least within the most common of normative boundaries, but with the absence of conscience within those setting prices for feel-good junk, so one might call it, right beside unrealistic expectations for those with issues but most desperate for moving on, out, and up with some return to decency, dignity, and security.


Posted to YouTube by Morals Over Money, September 13, 2021.

Posted to YouTube by Soft White Underbelly, February 22, 2020.

Posted to YouTube, May 7, 2021.

Related on BackChannels: https://conflict-backchannels.com/2019/10/04/an-american-report-card/


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