With a one-term Trump Presidency, we have dodged a powerful bullet, and we should keep in mind that it took crossover Republicans to do it.
Biden’s now relying on outdated postures and needs to be shaken out of the still near past with Obama.
I’ll go a little further here with the note that our own decadence drives large foreign affairs, financial, and social issues. We’ve overdone it with the coke, dope, and sex (for starters), and the same have launched mass migrations toward us as well as funded our enemies through their control of Transnational Crime Organizations (TCOs). As “Children of the ’60s”, we should own up to some of the less immediately visible consequences of our own appetites.
In the western hemisphere, insecurity related to black market operations — cartels, gangs — literally drives people out of their homes; the same, of course, sends the “entrepreneurs” toward The North for business — or deliveries.
Italics added to the above quotation fromEric Heinze’s analysis in The JC.
“Rise of the Rus” — and the End of the Khazar Kingdom: Excerpt with Reference
Rise of Rus
Originally the Khazars were probably allied with various Norse factions who controlled the region around Novgorod. The Rus’ Khaganate, an early Rus polity in northwestern Russia, was probably heavily influenced by the Khazars. The Rus’ regularly travelled through Khazar-held territory to attack territories around the Black and Caspian Seas; in one such raid, the Khagan is said to have given his assent on the condition that the Rus’ give him half of the booty. In addition, the Khazars allowed the Rus to use the trade route along the Volga River. This alliance was apparently fostered by the hostility between the Khazars and Arabs. At a certain point, however, the Khazar connivance to the sacking of the Muslim lands by the Varangians led to a backlash against the Norsemen from the Muslim population of the Khaganate. The Khazar rulers closed the passage down the Volga for the Rus’, sparking a war. In the early 960s, Khazar ruler Joseph wrote to Hasdai ibn Shaprut about the deterioration of Khazar relations with the Rus: “I have to wage war with them, for if I would give them any chance at all they would lay waste the whole land of the Muslims as far as Baghdad.”
The Rus warlords Oleg of Novgorod and Sviatoslav I of Kiev launched several wars against the Khazar khaganate, often with Byzantine connivance. The Schechter Letter relates the story of a campaign against Khazaria by HLGW (Oleg) around 941 (in which Oleg was defeated by the Khazar general Pesakh; this calls into question the timeline of the Primary Chronicle and other related works on the history of the Eastern Slavs.
Sviatoslav finally succeeded in destroying Khazar imperial power in the 960s. The Khazar fortresses of Sarkel and Tamatarkha fell to the Rus in 965, with the capital city of Atil following circa 967 or 969. A visitor to Atil wrote soon after the sacking of the city: “The Rus attacked, and no grape or raisin remained, not a leaf on a branch.”
The Roman Empire had never been Europe’s only organizing power.
The Germanic tribes, the Norse, the Mongols, and many others had been crossing that landscape for political community, trade, and war for centuries. However, it appears to have been the Varangians — descendants of the Vikings — who corrupted the Turkic Jewish Khazar, and when the protective kingdom thought better of looting some of its own villages (Muslim) in concert with the Varangians (and sharing the loot), the Varangians made war on the Khazar and destroyed the kingdom. Legends about that warfare — and the Jews — MAY have floated across northern, central, and eastern Europe for generations. Combined with Christian supersessionary ambitions for subscription and the elimination of Judaism as a contemporary religion, the seeds for Russian (and Greek Orthodox) anti-Semitism may have flourished.
Navalny’s team is calling for people to fill the streets and to support him and to express their anger with the regime. And the whole thing has become like a snowball. It went viral when Navalny released his movie about Putin’s palace [editor’s note: an online investigation, released after Navalny’s return to Russia last week, that explores Putin’s massive Black Sea estate and the money flows that financed it in great detail], which has already reached some kind of astronomical number of views. And now we’re seeing the accumulated effect of 20 years of Putin’s dictatorship, the growing disappointment of the Russian people with their socioeconomic conditions, and anger about corruption and the wealth of Putin’s oligarchs. We’re seeing a clear a message from the young generation of Russians that they’re not going to tolerate Putin’s indefinite rule.
Yes, laziness — or efficiency — has me fooling with style in the captioning of YouTube videos.
Absolute Power, corruption, and criminality in Russia have apparently left bereft much of the Russian Federation’s constituency. Programmatic theft, so forced in and around Russia under the Bolsheviks and especially vicious during Stalin’s tenure, has undermined affection and trust for Putin as the “Great Leader”. From leveraging himself into power with the Moscow Apartment Bombings to the presence of the palace (long covered but not quite so investigated as by Alexei Navalny) to now this latest confrontation having to do with basic integrity in state leadership, Putin as wrapped together — but also around himself — the most rogue forces of Russian civilization.
The appellation “Russian Mafia State” has at this pass garnered broad internal popular interest and now there’s a product — Navalny’s documentary — able to inform Russians about their own deep exploitation.
The YouTube counter approaches 99 million views on this captioned video –>
Power in Russia’s authoritarian political system is concentrated in the hands of President Vladimir Putin. With loyalist security forces, a subservient judiciary, a controlled media environment, and a legislature consisting of a ruling party and pliable opposition factions, the Kremlin is able to manipulate elections and suppress genuine dissent. Rampant corruption facilitates shifting links among bureaucrats and organized crime groups.
In Russia, the robber barons and thugs have won their state, but the same appear to be losing the hearts and minds of Russians who have not themselves experienced the privileges known to favorable association with the “Vertical of Power”.
During Joe Biden’s presidential confirmation, the entire free world watched in horror and fear at the onslaught of incited crowds on the sanctuaries of American democracy – the Senate and House of Representatives. But for those of us who noticed Israeli flags hoisted alongside the neo-Nazi shirts, the experience was even more shocking.
For anyone for whom Zionism and humanism are important, especially those who remember the trauma of the UN resolution equating Zionism with racism, it is hard to think of a more disturbing connection than the one we witnessed that night.
VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – Pope Francis on Wednesday marked the 76th anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz death camp by urging people to keep a close watch on ideological extremism, because “these things can happen again”.Slideshow ( 3 images )
We each of us know what belongs to each by way of our persons and our families, and if we’re a little larger than that, our companies and communities, but we falter some with “my air; my water; my mountains; my rivers; my shores”. Some objects are too large for singular possession. Even subdivided and sold off in lots — so one might own a patch or an estate (and hunting grounds) — such resources and spaces may have lives of their own and greater than appreciated. OUR rain forests, for example, may be critical to OUR planetary oxygen supply.
As our species matures — however else we may think of ourselves (as framed by our nearly 7000 living language cultures and directed, somewhat, by our 4300 active religions), we may consider the fragility of our species foremost — we may do well to look far forward of our positions rather than fix and freeze ourselves as we are. If we are to contemplate, for example, the end of the Eon of Oil and continued Global Warming or merely increasingly severe oscillations in temperature, this may be the best time to think about the energy resources and insulating technologies of the 22nd Century.
Why not — and why not this minute?
It’s never too late?
It’s never too soon.
What if the world hadn’t to deal with what have become essentially political criminals?
What are we — or what is the world — still doing here — in the same frozen situation — with Ukraine?
Ukraine’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Dmytro Kuleba said on January 11 that Russia “has done everything to fulfill nothing.” His latest attempts with his German counterpart “to hold another round of talks at the level of foreign minister were unsuccessful,” Mr. Kuleba said. He said the continuing deadlock is a situation in which, “on the one hand, there is progress on Donbas, and, on the other, there is no progress.”
While it may be understood that we are not all angels, one might wonder why any state population must be made to weather the bullying criminality of gangs, more or less, of so-called “state elites” and leaders — or invasion by alien forces ordered by the same with precisely that mentality?
I had thought both the feudal and medieval eras known to European and Russian history finished off by the allied powers of World War II.
While at this post-Trumpian moment (start HIS history as an American President with Manafort, his first choice for campaign manager), no American has the right to ask how others could have been blown so far off course from the modern and practical demands for accountability, integrity, and responsibility in governance, the complaint begs a question as applicable to every capital as well as Kiev and Moscow: who would be the good stewards of states and regions and on up the scale to global assets?
These “leaders” that draw out crowds to brave their batons and bullets and mass arrests — who would have time for them were they not so brazen and stuffed full of themselves?
An advertisement for Good Stewards of any geopolitical space: ability to both imagine and think beyond one’s own existence and interests; ethical; good-willed; holistic; honest; magnanimous; possessed of high integrity; responsible; sense of humor a must.
What if through democracy coupled with ambitious public education, the world really could think about and tend to its own collective future well being as expressed through Qualities of Living x Area-Squared (or Cubed) for any geopolitical space?
I know at this point — I am 65 — my references are a bit dated but I feel their spirit still to be realized. If those who wish for themselves and future generations better lives, the answers, means, and methods are certain to be found in the comprehending of global issues and the development of related cooperation across space and time.
The slogans, e.g., “Think Globally — Act Locally”, have been around for a long time. The businessmen and politicians up to the challenge of producing a better world NOW and for setting up into the next century? Apparently, far less than would seem immediately desirable.
Books and circulars, first, radio, television, and films, later, have long presented us to ourselves, and so much so that it has long been common to reference our behavior in terms of characters well known. There has been the Great White Hunter’s perspective too in which the white guy — the Ernest Hemingway of one American generation; the Peter Beard of another — would view the journey into the “back of beyond” as exotic, and one day not too long ago, it was exotic.
The Grand Tour may be that no longer.
We are all here making our appearance known on desktop around the world. “Global Culture” — what we look like in recordings worldwide — has had these other and epic tours since the 1990s, and now we in North America have had in place for at least 14 years an astonishing “World Wide Web” through which all may see the world — including themselves — in states closer and closer to real time — or with live feeds within seconds of “real time”.
How are we now supposed to separate?
It’s too late — and we’re not going to go backward into more parochial decades or centuries.
In fact, we’re going to go through the life process and illness and death in the company of our virtually relayed but quite real familiars — our Facebook buddies, Twitter rosters, Instagram producers, and such — thousands of miles from our own desktops. When these new old friends fall ill . . . we’ll know it depending on our emotional and relational distance, not our geography. We’ll be asking what can be done (hit the FB “Cares” icon!) and what can we do — and about so many things: what can be done and what can we do sitting where each of us sits?
In terms of the larger picture, the significance of the Euromaidan, or generally the Maidan, of 2013-14 can hardly be overstated: it not only caps the period of hybrid post-Soviet existence initiated by independence in 1991, but also provides a kind of closure to the complex and drawn-out process of Ukrainian nation-formation that began in the 19th century.
Russia’s in trouble today — https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/24/world/europe/photos-russia-navalny-protest.html — and partially for stubbornly clinging to its 19th Century political culture with its absolute and uncaring power. While the state has strongly supported its Defense and Energy businesses, and used the latter to pry Turkey from NATO (in spirit — the matter’s complicated but the Turkish Stream energy project plays strongly in Erdogan’s relationship with Putin) — it’s in trouble (as usual) for being backward. Sooner or later, it too will have to deal with modern issues, including democracy, environmental ethics, and human rights.
I repeat —
Inspiration for the post: Biden’s working of the Keystone Pipeline issue seemingly to Russia’s advantage as an energy competitor. Recall that the United States under Obama had become energy independent and energy exporting. However, underlying issues having to do with . . . human agency and responsibility may more determine the politics of the future — if we as a species are to have a future that more opens time than closes down in darkness within it.