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TBR News June 10, 2018

Jun 10 2018

The Voice of the White House  

Washington, D.C. June 10, 2018: “The U.S. Army has a drone trainng school located at Ft. Huachuca, Arizona, an iintelligence center located 10 miles from the Mexican border and the home of massive telephonic intelligence intercept units, aimed at Central and South America. At present there are 225 soldiers, reservists, and National Guardsmen training at this school. And on the faculty are three Israeli specialists   This unit is not destined for the middle east or even Pakistan; it has been set up to conduct surveillance of northern Mexico. There are two reasons for wanting to watch our southern neighbor. The first is to watch for great treks of illegal aliens but the second, and most important, is to conduct reconnaissance of territory over which American military units might be traversing in any punitive actions that could very,very well be triggered by the growing political instability in Mexico, caused by a growing struggle between the central government and the very powerful Mexican-based drug lords, who are wreaking havoc in that very corrupt country.

If a highly irate CIA employee, complaining of “excessive Israeli influence” in his agency, had not passed on files of information to the Russians late last year in Miami, in all probability, we would be reading about a stunning Israeli attack on Tehran. Now, the Iranian anti-aircraft missile batteries, supplied and manned by Russian “technicians,” have the probable coordinates of such an Israeli surprise attack, from the north, which would give the defenses of Tehran a vital heads-up.”

 

The Table of Contents

  • Did Ronald Reagan Warn Against ‘Demagogues’ Willing to Declare a Trade War Against America’s Friends?
  • France condemns ‘fits of anger’ after Donald Trump’s G7 turnaround
  • Trump the outsider gatecrashes own party: Top takeaways from an ill-mannered G7
  • Preventative War: The One Way Donald Trump Could Lose Against North Korea
  • A scandal for all seasons: those Scott Pruitt ethics violations in full 
  • Donald Trump’s Surveillance of New York Times Reporter Is a True Declaration of War Against the Press
  • The Beau Ideal of Deadbeats
  • Russia’s Putin would be ready to host G7 in Moscow
  • Hezbollah leader says to stay in Syria
  • The Role of Israel in the Georgian War
  • Negative History
  • Bitcoin Predictions: June 2018

Did Ronald Reagan Warn Against ‘Demagogues’ Willing to Declare a Trade War Against America’s Friends?

During a 1988 radio address, President Reagan railed against those calling for trade tariffs and derided protectionism as “a cheap form of nationalism.”

Snopes.com

CLAIM President Reagan warned the public against demagogues who advocated a trade war against America’s friendly trading partners in the name of protectionism.

RATING True

ORIGIN

In June 2018, President Trump imposed tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from Canada, Mexico, and the European Union (EU), citing trade imbalances he said harm U.S. companies, endanger American workers’ jobs, and “threaten to impair the national security of the United States.”

The move prompted swift opposition at home, including by some in the president’s own party who warned of the deleterious effects of a trade war between the U.S. and its allies. Within days of Trump’s announcement, Canada, Mexico, and the EU vowed retaliatory tariffs on American products.

Among the rhetorical weapons brandished by opponents of the tariffs was a quote attributed to President Ronald Reagan, a conservative icon, inveighing against trade protectionism and labeling those who defended instigating trade wars with friendly countries “demagogues”:

Our search for the provenance of the quote led us to a radio address delivered by Reagan (one of his last as president) on 26 November 1988. In it, he referred to protectionism as “a cheap form of nationalism” and told Americans that “[o]ur peaceful trading partners are not our enemies; they are our allies.”

This is a partial transcript:

“In recent years, the trade deficit led some misguided politicians to call for protectionism, warning that otherwise we would lose jobs. But they were wrong again. In fact, the United States not only didn’t lose jobs, we created more jobs than all the countries of Western Europe, Canada, and Japan combined. The record is clear that when America’s total trade has increased, American jobs have also increased. And when our total trade has declined, so have the number of jobs.

Part of the difficulty in accepting the good news about trade is in our words. We too often talk about trade while using the vocabulary of war. In war, for one side to win, the other must lose. But commerce is not warfare. Trade is an economic alliance that benefits both countries. There are no losers, only winners. And trade helps strengthen the free world.

Yet today protectionism is being used by some American politicians as a cheap form of nationalism, a fig leaf for those unwilling to maintain America’s military strength and who lack the resolve to stand up to real enemies — countries that would use violence against us or our allies. Our peaceful trading partners are not our enemies; they are our allies. We should beware of the demagogues who are ready to declare a trade war against our friends — weakening our economy, our national security, and the entire free world — all while cynically waving the American flag. The expansion of the international economy is not a foreign invasion; it is an American triumph, one we worked hard to achieve, and something central to our vision of a peaceful and prosperous world of freedom.”

In contrast to Trump’s America-first populism, Reagan’s view of international relations was founded on the assumption that free and open trade between partner nations was to the mutual benefit of all concerned.

“I, like you, recognize the inescapable conclusion that all of history has taught,” he told a gathering of business and trade leaders in 1985. “The freer the flow of world trade, the stronger the tides for human progress and peace among nations.”

That having been said, Reagan’s view was more subtle than it appears at first glance. Like Trump, he recognized and affirmed that free and fair trade among nations requires a commitment by all parties to abide by the rules:

Above all else, free trade is, by definition, fair trade. When domestic markets are closed to the exports of others, it is no longer free trade. When governments subsidize their manufacturers and farmers so that they can dump goods in other markets, it is no longer free trade. When governments permit counterfeiting or copying of American products, it is stealing our future, and it is no longer free trade. When governments assist their exporters in ways that violate international laws, then the playing field is no longer level, and there is no longer free trade. When governments subsidize industries for commercial advantage and underwrite costs, placing an unfair burden on competitors, that is not free trade.

Nor was Reagan averse to mild protectionist gestures when the political environment required them. As Daniel Griswold, a former director of trade policy studies at the Cato Institute, wrote in 2004:

Like most post-war presidents, Reagan championed free trade while selectively deviating from it. Critics of trade note correctly that Reagan negotiated “voluntary” import quotas for steel and Japanese cars and imposed Section 201 tariffs on imported motorcycles to protect Harley-Davidson. All true. But those were the exceptions and not the rule. They were tactical retreats designed to defuse rising protectionists pressures in Congress.

Despite their overlapping concerns about the threat posed by unfair trade practices, one of the main things that set Reagan’s modus operandi apart from Trump’s was the former’s refusal to engage in trade war brinkmanship as a negotiating tool.

History will decide which is the more fruitful approach.

 

France condemns ‘fits of anger’ after Donald Trump’s G7 turnaround

The French president’s office has said there is no place for anger and insults in international cooperation. The Elysee Palace issued its statement after US President Donald Trump torpedoed a G7 summit agreement.

June 10, 2018

DW

French President Emmanuel Macron’s office on Sunday stressed the need for calm heads after the G7 summit ended in a fiasco in the Canadian town of Charlevoix.

The Elysee Palace was responding to questions about the outcome of the summit, after US President Donald Trump refused to give his backing to a joint declaration, despite hours earlier signing the communique.

Trump, who departed the summit early, also accused Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau of being “very dishonest” in his condemnation of US tariffs.

In a flurry of tweets from Air Force One, Trump — on his way toa meeting in Singapore with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un — also announced that he was withdrawing his support from the declaration.

No place for Trump’s anger

Macron’s office stressed that France and Europe maintained their support for the communique, saying there was no place for anger on the circuit of international diplomacy.

“International cooperation cannot be dictated by fits of anger and throwaway remarks,” the Elysee Palace said.

“Let’s be serious and worthy of our people. We make commitments and keep them,” the presidency said, adding that “France and Europe maintain their support for this statement.”

The office of German Chancellor Angela Merkel also said it stood by the communique.

Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said on Sunday the US president’s tweets had destroyed trust and Europe should answer by staying even closer together: “It’s actually not a real surprise, we have seen this with the climate agreement or the Iran deal,” Maas said about Trump’s decision.

“In a matter of seconds, you can destroy trust with 280 twitter characters,” Maas remarked, while it would take much longer to rebuild it.

Trump lashes out at Trudeau

Trump’s change of heart appeared to have been invoked by Trudeau’s comments on Trump’s steel and aluminum tariffs against Canada and other allies. Trudeau said Trump’s citing of “national security” as a reason for the levies being imposed was “kind of insulting” to Canadian veterans who had stood by their US allies in conflicts dating back to World War I.

The statement that Trump reneged on was also signed by the heads of government of Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy and Japan, all of which have also been hit by the US tariffs of 25 percent on imported steel and 10 percent on aluminum.

The communique signed by the leaders agreed on the need for “free, fair and mutually beneficial trade” and the importance of fighting protectionism.

 

Trump the outsider gatecrashes own party: Top takeaways from an ill-mannered G7

June 9, 2018

RT

The US’s status as the biggest G7 economy has customarily allowed it to steer the agenda of the club’s summits from its place at the top, the other countries following its lead. But Donald Trump chose a different tactic.

Flouting protocol

There were too many flagrant deviations by the US delegation from established etiquette to consider it a simple sign of Trump’s erratic boorishness. Instead, it appeared that American president was in no mood to compromise, and had every intention to aggravate.

Arriving late to miss a face-to-face with Emmanuel Macron, snubbing Theresa May while leaking pointed comments about her “school mistress” tone, tardiness at the official breakfast on Saturday, and skipping a climate change discussion to leave early, only to give a casual press conference on the way out – all of these were extravagant diplomatic displays of disdain.

While some have reported that Trump simply never wanted to go to Quebec, others believe he is following the well-known conflict strategy in negotiation, in which he scares his supposedly saner counterparts into granting him his wishes just to avoid the greater risks he is prepared to take. The only man with a counter-strategy to the man-with-the-bomb act appeared to be Emmanuel Macron who simply decided to death grip Donald Trump’s hand until it turned an alarming shade of white, though it remains uncertain if the move was effective.

Russia’s G8 status a red rag

There is no better way to rile up the rest of the G7 than by suggesting that it welcome Russia back at the exact moment when relations between Moscow and the West are hitting a new nadir on a weekly basis.

Trump mentioned this proposal at every single press opportunity, straight-facedly talking about how reintegrating Moscow would be a boon to world peace, and even had the chutzpah to suggest that some (unspecified) countries actually agreed with the proposal.

Discussing Crimea as an Obama-era issue also implied that the current administration may not regard the fate of the peninsula as an immovable issue resulting in eternal sanctions, a contravention of the “not an inch” rhetoric from Europe.

The tariff war isn’t going away easily

Many political rivals and analysts considered Trump’s pet obsessions – such as building that wall – wrong-headed or impractical, believing them to be empty campaign promises or fantasies. They are probably still surprised that the US president did move the embassy to Jerusalem, and actually quit the Iran deal.

And Trump’s trade balance hobby horse is one of his sturdiest, and could single-handedly explain his entire performance in Quebec.

Painting the US as a victim of its haplessness – “the piggy bank that everybody is robbing” including a “brutal” EU – as a result of asymmetrical tariffs, Trump announced his aluminum and steel levies in advance of the G7, and didn’t let the topic go, only to turn around at the last moment and suddenly suggest dropping tariffs altogether.

In one of the mostly tonally odd moments of the entire summit, Trump at one point announced out of nowhere – in a mix between a deadpan joke and a power move – that Canada had agreed to drop all tariffs, with Justin Trudeau standing next to him bemused (“we have a ten out of ten relationship,” Trump told the media).

Still relevant?

With Russia out, none of the BRICS countries were represented at Charlevoix, and economic data shows that with each annual summit the share of the seven keeps falling in relative terms, as the rest of the world catches up.

But libertarian economist Jeffrey Tucker believes the problems run deeper than that.

“The world economy is increasingly decentralized and integrated in a way that eludes control by anybody – whether it’s G7, G8, G20 or G200,” he told RT. “It’s hard to know if in the future these bodies will have much relevance to the way the world economy operates.”

So if it is not their economic heft, and their once-vaunted political unity that these seven countries are projecting what is it exactly that the G7 is offering, either to those posing the “family photo” or those in the wider world?

 

Preventative War: The One Way Donald Trump Could Lose Against North Korea

Otherwise America holds all the trump cards. Pyongyang simply doesn’t threaten us.

June 6, 2018

by Charles V. Peña

The American Conservative

President Trump’s highly anticipated summit in Singapore with Kim Jong-un is an off-again, on-again affair. A week ago the president cited Kim’s “tremendous anger and open hostility” in canceling his meeting with the North Korean leader. Though it was perhaps only a negotiating tactic, Trump’s stated desire to strike a deal for “complete, verifiable, and irreversible denuclearization of the Korean peninsula” looked to be a bust. Now, newly minted Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is scrambling to save the summit.

Lost in this flurry of activity is that, while denuclearization would be a good and welcomed turn of events, U.S. national security doesn’t require a denuclearization deal. The reality is that America is—and will remain—secure with or without an agreement. This means that, in the absence of a deal, military action to eliminate North Korea’s nuclear program is not a necessary next step.

In his letter to Kim Jong-un, President Trump stated, “You talk about your nuclear capabilities, but ours are so massive and powerful that I pray to God they will never have to be used.” Whether he intended to or not, the president stated exactly why—even with nuclear weapons—North Korea is not an existential threat: deterrence.

The essence of nuclear deterrence is straightforward. By having sufficient nuclear weapons, the United States is able to deter any other country from attacking its homeland because it could respond with utterly devastating effect.

During the Cold War against the former Soviet Union, this was the reality of Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD). MAD may not be our actual nuclear military doctrine or targeting strategy, but it is the reality of the capability of the United States’ strategic nuclear arsenal.

Kim Jong-un faces this inescapable reality. He knows that if he launches a nuclear weapon against the United States—a capability that we do not believe he has just yet—the U.S. could retaliate with enough force that the result would be total annihilation. In other words, any nuclear attack, regardless of how large or small, would be suicidal. Hence why the Kim dynasty has repeatedly demonstrated that its larger interest is its own survival—not suicide.

That Kim Jong-un understands deterrence is evidenced by the fact that, although North Korea has had nuclear weapons for more than a decade, they have never used them against their non-nuclear neighbors South Korea and Japan. This is presumably because the threat of a U.S. nuclear response hangs over Pyongyang’s head.

Most importantly, knowing that deterrence works means that even if Kim is unwilling to give up his nuclear weapons, his “treasured sword” (something that is almost certainly true), a failed deal on denuclearization leaves us with the status quo—and that may be the best possible outcome in the short run.

The only way America loses is if Washington launches a preventative war to remove Kim’s nuclear capability when we have no credible intelligence whatsoever of an imminent first strike against South Korea or Japan, let alone the United States. Indeed, no one is suggesting we need to launch a preventative war to take out Russia’s or China’s nuclear capabilities.

Yet that is exactly what Vice President Pence recently intimated. Just days before President Trump cancelled the summit meeting with Kim Jong-un, the vice president told Fox News: “You know, there was some talk of the Libyan model last week. And as the president made clear, this will only end like the Libyan model ended if Kim Jong-un doesn’t make a deal.”

The “Libya model” for North Korea was previously suggested by new national security advisor John Bolton, who is an advocate of regime change and previously made an argument for preventative war against North Korea.

The irony, of course, is that Moammar Gaddafi gave up his nuclear ambitions ostensibly in exchange for his security via the lifting of economic sanctions and more normalized relations with the West, yet nonetheless found himself on the receiving end of a U.S.-led regime change operation. So Kim Jong-un likely views that “Libya model” as a lose-lose proposition. As such, the White House shouldn’t have been so surprised that the North Korean reaction was angry and hostile.

While the canceled (for now) summit is a lost opportunity, it is not cause for alarm and does not mean we are in dire straits. There is already talk that Trump and Kim may meet as planned on June 12. Either way, we are no better or worse off than before.

North Korea is an extremely poor country that poses no direct military threat to America. The United States’ gross domestic product is more than 300 times larger than North Korea’s—over $14 trillion compared to $40 billion. The U.S. Department of Defense budget is more than 10 times the size of North Korea’s entire economy and some 50 times larger than North Korea’s military expenditures. And the vastly superior U.S. strategic nuclear force is a powerful deterrent against far greater powers, like Russia and China, let alone North Korea’s nascent nuclear capabilities.

Summit or no summit, the art of the deal with North Korea is that even without a deal, America’s national security remains intact. Donald Trump should remember that going forward.

 

 

A scandal for all seasons: those Scott Pruitt ethics violations in full 

Lobbyists, hand lotion and Chick-fil-A – it’s hard to keep up with the scandals engulfing the EPA administrator

June 10, 2018

by Oliver Milman in New York

The Guardian

Scott Pruitt, the seemingly immoveable administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, has an eclectic, almost itinerant, taste in corruption scandals.

Pruitt is best known for the ethical quagmires in this administration, shared with other Trump cabinet members, such as indulging in taxpayer-funded first class travel and spending much of his time playing an amenable host to corporations he is meant to regulate.

But the former Oklahoma attorney general’s appetite for controversy has also taken him in some daring and innovative new directions, offering up a smorgasbord that includes demanding his bodyguards drive him in search of his favourite moisturizing lotion, spending $1,500 on 12 pens, and bulldozing mere perceptions by literally living at an energy lobbyist’s apartment.

Pruitt’s tastes have a darker side, however, such as the revelations that he signed off on improper pay raises for favoured staff and has overseen an operation that physically bars journalists from covering his public genuflection for businesses. Not to mention that he has allegedly wreaked revenge upon colleagues who questioned his spending habits.

Even as Pruitt strives to tick off every conceivable ethical violation, the EPA administrator has still found time to peel back dozens of Obama-era rules aimed at reducing air and water pollution, as well as dismantle any vestige of action on climate change to the point where the very words have been scrubbed from the EPA website.

It’s been a dizzying, harrowing year for beleaguered agency staff, who have been tasked with unwinding their painstaking rule-making work while being led by an administrator who is the subject of a dozen different ethics investigations.

“It’s a toxic brew and the EPA is an unhappy place right now,” William Reilly, who was EPA administrator under George HW Bush, told the Guardian. “There is no precedent for this sort of behaviour and I don’t think the ship can be righted with this administrator. It would’ve got him fired in any administration but this one. It’s new and unwelcome territory.”

Democrats, environmental groups and Cher have repeatedly called for Pruitt’s removal. Many Republicans, too, are also heartily sick of him. “I think he’s acting like a moron,” said Senator John Kennedy, a Louisiana Republican. “I’m astounded at some of the stuff I read.” Joni Ernst, a senator from Iowa, said Pruitt was “as swampy as you get”.

Fortunately for Pruitt, his boss, Donald Trump, has yet to be swayed. “EPA is doing really, really well,” the president said on Wednesday. “Somebody has to say that about you a little bit.”

Given the relentless march of Pruitt controversies, it can be hard to keep up. Here are the main ones.

Pruitt spent more than $105,000 on first-class flights in his first year on the job, excluding use of military jets and helicopters. One 40-minute private flight cost $5,719. Pruitt has attempted to justify this expense because of threats that include obscenities shouted at him by the public and a letter from an 85-year-old, who wished he would “choke to death of cancer of the guts”.

He has since promised to move back to economy class. Pruitt has frequently traveled home to Oklahoma on the taxpayer’s dime, often asking staff to find work-related reasons.

He took a $100,000 trip with staff to Morocco, partly arranged by a lobbyist. A trip to Italy cost around $120,000 and involved a private tour of the Vatican and dinner with Cardinal George Pell, a climate change denier who was under investigation over sexual abuse.

The EPA’s inspector general is investigating Pruitt’s travel.

Unusual office supplies

Pruitt’s tenure has been marked by an unusual desire for secrecy for what is, essentially, a public health job. He installed a $43,000 soundproof phone booth in his office that the Government Accountability Office has deemed violates federal spending laws.

Another $9,000 was spent sweeping Pruitt’s office for listening bugs and installing biometric locks. Pruitt’s head of security wanted to spend another $70,000 to replace two desks.A total of $1,560 was billed to the EPA for 12 customized silver pens.

The lobbyists

Even before being appointed as EPA chief, Pruitt was known for having an extremely close relationship with fossil fuel executives and lobbyists.

In March, it emerged that Pruitt lived for about six months in a Washington condo owned by an energy lobbyist at a cut-price $50 a night – and was still reportedly late with the rent.

And Pruitt once secretly bought a home in Oklahoma with a registered lobbyist and last year accepted VIP basketball tickets from Joseph Craft, a billionaire coal baron and Trump donor who has pushed for the loosening of environmental rules.

The security guards

On his first day at the EPA, Pruitt asked for, and was granted, a 24/7 security detail that includes around 20 people. The cost of this protection amounted to $3.5m in Pruitt’s first year – far more than his predecessors.

Pruitt’s team, which unsuccessfully sought a bulletproof SUV for their ward, have accompanied the administrator on risk-laden trips to Disneyland and the Rose Bowl. Recently, it emerged that Pruitt used his bodyguards to pick up dry cleaning and look for a certain moisturizing lotion found in Ritz-Carlton hotels.

He has also reportedly asked other staff to pick up protein bars and Greek yoghurt for him, as well as arrange private accommodation and even ask the Trump International hotel for an old mattress. Government employees generally aren’t allowed to deploy staff for personal tasks.

Chick-fil-A

Internal EPA emails have shed light on how Pruitt had an agency staffer contact Dan Cathy, an executive at the fast food chain Chick-fil-A, over a “potential business opportunity”.

This “opportunity” turned out to be a bid to secure a Chick-fil-A franchise for Pruitt’s wife, Marlyn. A company spokeswoman said Marlyn Pruitt started a franchise application but didn’t complete it.

“My wife is an entrepreneur. I love, she loves, Chick-fil-A, it’s a franchise of faith. It’s an exciting time,” said Pruitt, presumably alluding to the company owner’s conservative religious bent, which has manifested itself in a stance against same-sex marriage.

Staff upheaval

As ethical problems have engulfed Pruitt, various aides have departed the EPA. Spokeswoman Liz Bowman and policy adviser Samantha Dravis have left in recent months, followed in the past week by legal counsel Sarah Greenwalt and Millan Hupp, the scheduling director who was assigned to secure the mattress from the Trump hotel. Hupp’s sister Sydney also worked for Pruitt and was asked to set up the Chick-fil-A meeting.

At least five other EPA officials were either reassigned, demoted or requested new jobs after questioning Pruitt’s spending habits. Pruitt has denied any retribution but former deputy chief of staff Kevin Chmielewski has called this a “bold-faced” lie.

Of greater importance in the work to safeguard clean air and water, about 700 EPA staff have left the agency since Pruitt took over.

Transparency

Pruitt has argued that scientific work should be transparent, to the point that he mooted a televised debate between climate scientists and those who deny the planet is warming due to human activity.

His own activities are particularly opaque, however. Meetings and public events are routinely kept secret until afterwards, or strictly vetted.

Reporters who cover Pruitt frequently encounter hostility. The EPA barred certain outlets from a recent summit, with one AP reporter physically removed by a security guard.

The EPA’s press office regularly unleashes personal attacks on journalists simply for relaying verifiable facts, with spokesman Jahan Wilcox recently telling Elaina Plott of the Atlantic, “You have a great day, you’re a piece of trash”, for accurately reporting the departure of Millan Hupp.

 

Donald Trump’s Surveillance of New York Times Reporter Is a True Declaration of War Against the Press

June 8, 2018

by James Risen

The Intercept

Donald Trump’s real war on the press has finally begun.

Ever since he began his campaign for president, Trump has engaged in a largely rhetorical battle against the press, casting the reporters who cover him as the enemy of the average American and as disseminators of what he calls “fake news.” But for the most part, Trump’s bark has been worse than his bite. Unlike his predecessor, Barack Obama, Trump was not known to have spied on journalists or tried to jail them – as Obama did with me – for refusing to reveal their sources.

Until now.

Now we know that the Justice Department secretly seized the phone and email records of Ali Watkins, a New York Times reporter, in a leak investigation involving a former Senate staffer. It is the first time the Trump administration is known to have engaged in such an aggressive tactic against a reporter, and it is exactly the kind of press surveillance at which the Obama administration excelled. For years, conservatives attacked Obama for using such tactics to spy on reporters. Of course, there was no outcry from the right on Friday over Trump’s willingness to do the same thing.

To be sure, Trump has previously gone after the alleged sources of stories in the press, including former National Security Agency contractor Reality Winner and FBI agent Terry Albury, both of whom have been accused of providing classified information to The Intercept. The Intercept does not comment on its sources. But the targeting of Watkins shows that the Trump administration is willing to attack the press directly.

One story that apparently caught the interest of the Trump administration as part of this draconian leak investigation concerned the Trump-Russia probe. Documents made public in the new leak case show that the government wanted to know how Watkins, then a reporter for BuzzFeed, found out last year that Russian intelligence tried to recruit Carter Page, a former Trump campaign foreign policy adviser who is a key figure in the Trump-Russia investigation.

The fact that a scoop about the Trump-Russia case apparently helped prompt a leak investigation by the Trump administration shouldn’t come as a surprise. Trump and those around him have been obsessed with trying to stop the investigation ever since it began.

Jeff Sessions, Trump’s attorney general and crony, has been forced to recuse himself from overseeing the probe, but there is no evidence that he has recused himself from overseeing leak investigations involving stories about the Trump-Russia case. That gives Sessions a way to try to control press coverage of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation.

Americans should stop and think about how Trump and Sessions can use such leak investigations as a backdoor way to block the Mueller inquiry. The press (notably the New York Times and the Washington Post) has played a central role in uncovering key aspects of the Trump-Russia case, and has kept the story alive when public and governmental interest has waned. This leak case seems designed to dissuade aggressive reporters like Watkins and others from continuing to dig into the Russia story. It represents an ominous message to reporters from the Trump White House and the Sessions Justice Department: If you keep reporting on Russia, we will punish you.

American journalists must fight back by continuing to investigate the Trump-Russia story and publishing what we find

Trump has tried to demonize the press and now has begun to use the Justice Department and the FBI to do his bidding by going after reporters. But Americans should realize that journalists are not the enemy of the people, as Trump claims. The press is one of the most important checks on Trump’s authoritarian impulses.

 

The Beau Ideal of Deadbeats

June 10, 2018

by Christian Jürs

Trump has never filed for personal bankruptcy, but his hotel and casino businesses were declared bankrupt six times between 1991 and 2009 in order to re-negotiate debt with banks and owners of stock and bonds. Because the businesses used Chapter 11 bankruptcy, they were allowed to operate while negotiations proceeded.

Mr. Trump was quoted by Newsweek magazine in 2011 saying, “I do play with the bankruptcy laws – they’re very good for me” as a tool for trimming debt.

The six bankruptcies were the result of over-leveraged hotel and casino businesses in Atlantic City and New York: Trump Taj Mahal (1991), Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino (1992), Plaza Hotel (1992), Trump Castle Hotel and Casino (1992), Trump Hotels and Casino Resorts (2004), and Trump Entertainment Resorts (2009).

As president, Trump has frequently made false statements in public speeches and remarks. Trump uttered “at least one false or misleading claim per day on 91 of his first 99 days” in office according to The New York Times, and 1,318 total in his first 263 days in office. The Washington Post, also wrote, “President Trump is the most fact-challenged politician that The Fact Checker has ever encountered… the pace and volume of the president’s misstatements means that we cannot possibly keep up.”

Mr. Trump has a history of making racially-charged statements and taking actions perceived as racially motivated.

In 1975, Mr. Trump settled a lawsuit brought by the U.S. Department of Justice in 1973 alleging housing discrimination against black renters. In 1989, he was accused of racism for insisting that a group of black and Latino teenagers were guilty of raping a white woman in the Central Park jogger case even after they were exonerated by DNA evidence.

He continued to maintain this position as late as 2016.

Mr.Trump launched his 2016 presidential campaign with a speech in which he described Mexican immigrants as criminals and rapists.

One of Mr.Trump’s campaign managers, Paul Manafort, had worked for several years to help pro-Russian politician Viktor Yanukovich win the Ukrainian presidency.

Other Trump associates, including former National Security Advisor Michael T. Flynn and political consultant Roger Stone, have been connected to Russian officials. Russian agents were overheard during the campaign saying they could use Manafort and Flynn to influence Trump.

Members of Mr.Trump’s campaign and later his White House staff, particularly Flynn, were in contact with Russian officials both before and after the November election In a December 29, 2016 conversation, Flynn and Kislyak discussed the recently imposed sanctions against Russia; Mr.Trump later fired Flynn for falsely claiming he had not discussed the sanctions.

Donald Trump has pursued business deals in Russia since 1987, and has sometimes traveled there to explore potential business opportunities. In 1996, Trump trademark applications were submitted for potential Russian real estate development deals. Mr.Trump’s partners and children have repeatedly visited Moscow, connecting with developers and government officials to explore joint venture opportunities. Mr.Trump was never able to successfully conclude any real estate deals in Russia. However, individual Russians have invested heavily in Trump properties, and following Mr.Trump’s bankruptcies in the 1990s he borrowed money from Russian sources. In 2008 his son Donald Trump Jr. said that Russia was an important source of money for the Trump businesses.

In 1996 Mr.Trump partnered with Liggett-Ducat, a small company, and planned to build an upscale residential development on a Liggett-Ducat property in Moscow. Trump commissioned New York architect Ted Liebman, who did the sketches.

In 1987 Mr.Trump visited Russia to investigate developing a hotel

In Russia, Mr.Trump promoted the proposal and acclaimed the Russian economic market. At a news conference reported by The Moscow Times, Mr.Trump said he hadn’t been “as impressed with the potential of a city as I have been with Moscow” in contrast to other cities had visited “all over the world.

By this time, Mr.Trump made known his desire to build in Moscow to government officials for almost ten years ranging from the Soviet leader Mikhail S. Gorbachev (they first met in Washington in 1987) to the military figure Alexander Lebed.

Moscow’s mayor, Yuri M. Luzhkov, showed Trump plans for a very large shopping mall to be located underground in the vicinity of the Kremlin. The mayor complimented Mr.Trump’s suggestion that this mall should have access to the Moscow Metro, and it was eventually connected to the Okhotny Ryad station. Although the 1996 residential development did not happen, Mr.Trump was by this time well known in Russia.

Between 2000–2010, Mr.Trump entered into a partnership with a development company headquartered in New York represented by a Russian immigrant, Felix Sater. During this period, they partnered for an assortment of deals that included building Trump towers internationally and Russia was included. For example, in 2005 Slater acted as an agent for building a Trump tower alongside Moscow River with letters of intent in hand and “square footage was being analyzed.”

In 2006, Mr.Trump’s children Donald Jr. and Ivanka stayed in the Hotel National, Moscow for several days, across from the Kremlin, to interview prospective partners, with the intention of formulating real estate development projects.

Sater had also traveled to Moscow with Mr. Trump, his wife Ivanka and son Donald Jr.

Mr. Trump was associated with Tevfik Arif, formerly a Soviet commerce official and founder of a development company called the Bayrock Group, of which Sater was also a partner.

Bayrock searched for deals in Russia while Trump Towers company were attempting to further expand in the United States. Mr. Sater said, “We looked at some very, very large properties in Russia,” on the scale of “…a large Vegas high-rise.”

In 2007, Bayrock organized a potential deal in Moscow between Trump International Hotel and Russian investors

During 2006–2008 Mr.Trump’s company applied for a number of trademarks in Russia with the goal of real estate developments. These trademark applications include: Trump, Trump Tower, Trump International Hotel and Tower, and Trump Home.

In 2008, Mr. Trump spoke at a Manhattan real estate conference, stating that he he really prefered Moscow over all cities in the world and that within 18 months he had been in Russia a half-dozen times.

Mr.Trump had received large and undisclosed payments over 10 years from Russians for hotel rooms, rounds of golf, or Trump-licensed products such as wine, ties, or mattresses, which would not have been identified as coming from Russian sources in the tax returns

 

Russia’s Putin would be ready to host G7 in Moscow

June 10, 2018

by Denis Pinchuk

Reuters

QINGDAO, China (Reuters) – Russia did not choose to leave the G7 and would be happy to host its members in Moscow, President Vladimir Putin said on Sunday when asked about U.S. President Donald Trump’s suggestion that Russia should have been at its latest meeting.

Trump said on Friday that Russia should have attended a Group of Seven summit in Canada over the weekend, an idea that even Moscow seemed to reject saying it was focused on other formats. Russia was pushed out of the then G8 due to its annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea four years ago.

“We did not (choose to) leave it, our colleagues refused to come to Russia due to known reasons at some point. Please, we will be glad to see everyone here in Moscow,” Putin told reporters at a briefing in China’s city of Qingdao.

He, however, added that the combined purchasing power of the Russia and China-led Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), a meeting of which he was attending in China, outstripped the G7. The latter currently includes the United States, Canada, Japan, Britain, Italy, France and Germany.

The G7 ended in discord on Saturday when Trump clashed with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and said he might hit the auto industry with tariffs.

Trump said in March that he and Putin would meet soon, but since then already poor ties between Washington and Moscow have deteriorated further over the conflict in Syria and the poisoning of a former Russian spy in Britain. The Kremlin has complained that efforts to organize the meeting seem frozen.

Putin said on Sunday he thought it was important that the two men meet and said he shared Trump’s concerns about the risks of an arms race developing between Russia and the United States, something he said officials from the two countries needed to discuss.

He said a meeting could take place as soon as the United States was ready and that many European countries had offered their help in making it happen.

Putin, who has previously told Europe he had warned them about the trade threat Washington posed to them, also said that if Trump imposed new tariffs on imports of foreign cars it would have serious consequences for the global economy and especially for Europe.

Trump was due to arrive in Singapore on Sunday ahead of a historic summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

Reporting by Denis Pinchuk; writing by Polina Devitt and Andrew Osborn; Editing by Adrian Croft/Keith Weir

 

Hezbollah leader says to stay in Syria

June 8, 2018

Reuters

BEIRUT (Reuters) – Lebanon’s Iran-backed Hezbollah will remain in Syria as long as Syrian President Bashar al-Assad wants it there, the group’s leader said on Friday, defying renewed U.S. and Israeli pressure to force Tehran and its allies to quit the country.

“I will tell you that if the whole world comes together to force us to leave Syria, they will not be able to evict us,” Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah said in a televised address, adding that only the Syrian leadership could ask them to leave.

Israel has repeatedly struck Hezbollah and Iranian targets in Syria, saying they must leave the country, with which it shares a border. Washington has also demanded that Iran and forces it back quit.

Alongside Russia, Iran-backed forces in Syria have helped Assad drive rebels from the country’s biggest cities and reclaim swathes of the eastern deserts from Islamic State.

Russia has recently called for all non-Syrian forces to leave southern Syria, a statement seen as partly aimed at Iran, as well as at U.S. forces in a base near the Iraqi border.

Senior Syrian officials have said they want to recapture the rebel-held areas in the southwest near the border with Israel. Israeli strikes in Syria are partly aimed at keeping Hezbollah and other Iran-backed forces from its border.

This week, a Russian troop deployment near the border with Lebanon caused friction with Iran-backed forces there including Hezbollah, a rare case of Assads’ allies acting out of sync with each other, though it was soon resolved.

In his speech Nasrallah mocked the idea that U.S., Israeli or Gulf pressure was forcing a wedge between Russia and Iran on Syria.

Reporting by Laila Bassam and Angus McDowall, Editing by William Maclean

 

The Role of Israel in the Georgian War

June 10, 2018

by Brian Harring

Georgia became a huge source of income, and military advantage, for the Israeli government and Israeli arms dealers..  Israel began selling arms to Georgia about seven years ago, following an initiative by Georgian citizens who immigrated to Israel and became weapons hustlers.

They contacted Israeli defense industry officials and arms dealers and told them that Georgia had relatively large budgets, mostly American grants,  and could be interested in purchasing Israeli weapons.

The military cooperation between the countries developed swiftly. The fact that Georgia’s defense minister, Davit Kezerashvili, is a former Israeli who is fluent in Hebrew contributed to this cooperation. “We are now in a fight against the great Russia,” he said, “and our hope is to receive assistance from the White House, because Georgia cannot survive on its own. “

Kezerashvili’s door was always open to the Israelis who came and offered his country arms systems made in Israel. Compared to countries in Eastern Europe, the deals in this country were conducted fast, mainly due to the pro-Israeli defense minister’s personal involvement.

The Jerusalem Post on August 12, 2008 reported: “Georgian Prime Minister Vladimer (Lado) Gurgenidze(Jewish) made a special call to Israel Tuesday morning to receive a blessing from one of the Haredi community’s most important rabbis and spiritual leaders, Rabbi Aharon Leib Steinman.” The Prime Minister of Georgia, principally a nation of Orthodox Christians called Rabbi Steinman saying ‘I’ve heard he is a holy man. I want him to pray for us and our state.’

Among the Israelis who took advantage of the opportunity and began doing business in Georgia were former Minister Roni Milo and his brother Shlomo, former director-general of the Military Industries, Brigadier-General (Res.) Gal Hirsch and Major-General (Res.) Yisrael Ziv.

Roni Milo conducted business in Georgia for Elbit Systems and the Military Industries, and with his help Israel’s defense industries managed to sell to Georgia remote-piloted vehicles (RPVs), automatic turrets for armored vehicles, antiaircraft systems, communication systems, shells and rockets.

The Ministry of Defense of Israel had supplied the Georgian government their Hermes 450 UAV spy drones, made by Elbit Maarahot Systems Ltd, for use, under the strict control of Israeli intelligence units, to conduct intelligence-gathering flights over southern Russia and, most especially into a Iran, targeted for Israeli Air Force attacks in the near future.

Two airfields in southern Georgia had been earmarked for the use of Israeli military aircraft, intended to launch an attack on identified targets relating to Iranian atomic energy projects. This attack was approved by President Bush in an undertaking with the government of Israel signed in Washington, D.C., on July 4, 2006.

The thrust of this top secret agreement was that the Israeli government would have “free and unfettered use” of unspecified Georgian airfields, under American control, onto which they could ferry fighter-bombers which then could fly south, over Turkish territory (and with clandestine Turkish permission) to strike at Tehran. The distance from Georgia to Tehran is obviously far less than from Tel Aviv.

No one expected that these attacks would completely  destroy Iranian military or scientific targets, but there would be the element of complete surprise coupled with serious property damage which might well interdict future Iranian atomic development and certainly serve as a serious warning to Iran not to threaten Israel again. Using Georgian bases, with the consent and full assistance of, the United States, would make such an attack much more feasible that attempting to fly from Israeli bases with overflights that might have serious regional diplomatic consequences.

Now, thanks to the irrational actions of the thoroughly unstable Georgian president, all of these schemes have collapsed and it is now believed that the Russian special forces have captured, intact, a number of the Israeli drones and, far more important, their radio controlling equipment.

In the main, Israeli military and intelligence units stationed in Georgia were mostly composed of Israel Defense Force reservists working for Global CST, owned by Maj. Gen. Israel Ziv, and Defense Shield, owned by Brig. Gen. Gal Hirsch. “The Israelis should be proud of themselves for the Israeli training and education received by the Georgian soldiers,” Georgian Minister Temur Yakobashvili.

By this manner, Israel could claim that it had a very small number of IDF people in Georgia “mainly connected with our Embassy in Tiblisi.” The Russians, however, were not fooled by this and their own intelligence had pinpointed Israeli surveillance bases and when they went after the Georgians who invaded South Ossetia, units of the Russian air force bombed the Israeli bases in central Georgia and in the area of the capital, Tbilisi. They also severely damaged the runways and service areas of the two Georgian airbases designed to launch Israeli sir force units in a sudden attack on Iran.

Israel is currently a part of the Anglo-American military axis, which cooperates with the interests of the Western oil giants in the Middle East and Central Asia.

Israel is a partner in the Baku-Tblisi- Ceyhan pipeline which brings oil and gas to the Eastern Mediterranean. More than 20 percent of Israeli oil is imported from Azerbaijan, of which a large share transits through the BTC pipeline. Controlled by British Petroleum, the BTC pipeline has dramatically changed the geopolitics of the Eastern Mediterranean and the Caucusus

“[The BTC pipeline] considerably changes the status of the region’s countries and cements a new pro-West alliance. Having taken the pipeline to the Mediterranean, Washington has practically set up a new bloc with Azerbaijan, Georgia, Turkey and Israel, ” (Komerzant, Moscow, 14 July 2006)

While the official reports state that the BTC pipeline will “channel oil to Western markets”, what is rarely acknowledged is that part of the oil from the Caspian sea would be directly channeled towards Israel, via Georgia. In this regard, a Israeli-Turkish pipeline project has also been envisaged which would link Ceyhan to the Israeli port of Ashkelon and from there through Israel’s main pipeline system, to the Red Sea.

The objective of Israel is not only to acquire Caspian sea oil for its own consumption needs but also to play a key role in re-exporting Caspian sea oil back to the Asian markets through the Red Sea port of Eilat. The strategic implications of this re-routing of Caspian sea oil are far-reaching

What has been planned, is to link the BTC pipeline to the Trans-Israel Eilat-Ashkelon pipeline, also kn as Israel’s Tipline, from Ceyhan to the Israeli port of Ashkelon.

 

Negative History

June 10, 2018

by Christian Jürs

With the savage Israeli bombing and artillery attack on the civilian population of Gaza under the specious excuse of “anti-terrorist” actions, there are very few people, outside of Israel, who actually understand the underlying reasons for this decades-long and very bloody struggle between Israel and all of her Arab neighbors. Many historians are, in fact, well aware of the underlying  factors but few, if any, would dare to discuss them in light of the savage retaliation that would immediately be visited upon them by pro-Israeli entities.

Forced out of Roman-controlled Judea by the Romans following a long and bloody series of revolts, internal massacres and destructive activities, the Jews were eventually expelled from Judea and went to reside in various places such as Alexandria, Egypt.

These deportees are today known as Sephardic Jews and are the descendants of the original Semitic inhabitants of Judea.

Another, larger, group of Jews are called Ashkenazi and are the direct descendents of the Khazar tribes of Central Asia. Originally nomadic peoples, the Khazars were located on the west bank of the Caspian Sea, noted for their savage behavior and in about 700 AD, were converted by their king to Judaism.

Defeated by the Russians, the Khazars spread to Russia, what is now Poland and other eastern European areas. They are not Semitic by background and today, 95% of the citizens of Israel are descended from these nomads, which were composed of Mongols, the occasional Swedish rus or Viking and other diverse ethnic groups.

The oft-repeated claim by Israel that they were the original inhabitants of Judea or Palestine is, from a historical point of view, entirely false.

Modern Zionism was the creation of Theodor Herzl (1860-1904) a Hungarian Jewish writer who advocated a Jewish state in Palestine. That the area was occupied, as it had been for thousands of years, by Arabs, themselves of Semitic origins, did not seem to bother the modern Zionists at all.

Following the end of the Second World War when huge masses of Eastern European Jews had been displaced from their countries in Poland, the Baltic states, Hungry, Romania, Greece, Germany, Austria and other European countries, they decided to move to Palestine and form their own state.

From 1944 through 1948, the entire area was subject to a literal reign of terror as large groups of DPs (Displaced Persons) descended on Palestine, wreaking havoc on the area. Murders, kidnappings, bombings, counterfeiting, bank robberies, blowing up hotels full of people and drive-by shootings were commonplace.

Eventually, the disruptions proved to be too much for the British, who occupied Palestine after the First World War and the collapse of the Ottoman Empire which once controlled it, withdrew and in 1948, the state of Israel was proclaimed.

Year and region where Jews have been expelled since 250 A.D.

 

YEAR                            PLACE

 

250 – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –  Carthage

415 – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –  Alexandria

554 – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –  Diocese of Clement (France)

561 – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –  Diocese of Uzzes (France)

612 – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –  Visigoth Spain

642 – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –  Visigoth Empire

855 – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –  Italy

876 – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –  Sens

1012 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Mainz

1182 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – France

1182 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Germany

1276 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Upper Bavaria

1290 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – England

1306 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – France

1322 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – France (again)

1348 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Switzerland

1349 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Hielbronn (Germany)

1349 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Saxony

1349 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Hungary

1360 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Hungary

1370 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Belgium

1380 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Slovakia

1388 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Strasbourg

1394 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Germany

1394 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – France

1420 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Lyons

1421 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Austria

1424 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Fribourg

1424 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Zurich

1424 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Cologne

1432 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Savoy

1438 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Mainz

1439 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Augsburg

1442 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Netherlands

1444 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Netherlands

1446 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Bavaria

1453 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – France

1453 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Breslau

1454 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Wurzburg

1462 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Mainz

1483 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Mainz

1484 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Warsaw

1485 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Vincenza (Italy)

1492 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Spain

1492 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Italy

1495 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Lithuania

1496 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Naples

1496 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Portugal

1498 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Nuremberg

1498 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Navarre

1510 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Brandenberg

1510 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Prussia

1514 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Strasbourg

1515 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Genoa

1519 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Regensburg

1533 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Naples

1541 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Naples

1542 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Prague & Bohemia

1550 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Genoa

1551 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Bavaria

1555 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Pesaro

1557 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Prague

1559 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Austria

1561 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Prague

1567 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Wurzburg

1569 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Papal States

1571 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Brandenburg

1582 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Netherlands

1582 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Hungary

1593 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Brandenburg, Austria

1597 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Cremona, Pavia & Lodi

1614 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Frankfort

1615 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Worms

1619 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Kiev

1648 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Ukraine

1648 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Poland

1649 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Hamburg

1654 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Little Russia (Beylorus)

1656 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Lithuania

1669 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Oran (North Africa)

1669 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Vienna

1670 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Vienna

1712 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Sandomir

1727 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Russia

1738 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Wurtemburg

1740 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Little Russia (Beylorus)

1744 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Prague, Bohemia

1744 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Slovakia

1744 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Livonia

1745 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Moravia

1753 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Kovad (Lithuania)

1761 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Bordeaux

1772 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Deported from Imperial Russia to the Pale of

Settlement (Poland/Russia)

1775 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Warsaw

1789 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Alsace

1804 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Villages in Russia

1808 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Villages & Countrysides (Russia)

1815 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Lübeck & Bremen

1815 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Franconia, Swabia & Bavaria

1820 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Bremen

1843 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Russian Border Austria & Prussia

1862 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Areas in the U.S. under General Grant’s Jurisdiction

1866 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Galatz, Romania

1880s – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Russia

1891 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Moscow

1919 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Bavaria (foreign- born Jews)

1938– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –  Poland (emigrated Polish-born Jews)

1938-45 – – – – – – – – – – – – – – German Controlled Areas

1941-44– – – – – – – – – – – – – – France

1944– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –  Hungary

1948 — – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Arab Countries

 

 

Bitcoin Predictions: June 2018

May 25, 2018

Seekingalpha

Summary

  • Bitcoin has recently taken a tumble of roughly 20% over the past two weeks, but a rebound is soon in the making.
  • South Korea launched a probe into UpBit, causing massive FUD and a drop in the price of.
  • Although the fear, uncertainty, and doubt have been reigning supreme, this will soon change at the $7500 level.

After hitting a double bottom at the $6,500 level of support, Bitcoin began surging – that is, until South Korea launched a probe into their largest exchange, UpBit.

Yahoo News, via Investing.com, reports:

Cryptocurrencies tumbled across the board on Friday adding heavily to a major weekly decline after news that South Korean officials raided the country’s largest crypto exchange.

Bitcoin sank 7.90% in the last 24 hours to reach $8,602.20 on the Bitfinex exchange by 10:46 AM ET (14:46 GMT), the largest crypto by market capitalization has lost 12.7% so far this week after an attack at the $10,000 level last Saturday petered out at $9,990.

The price of Bitcoin has since dropped by 13% in the past week, and although many cryptocurrency bears are proclaiming a new low is coming, crypto bulls are pointing to indicators which beg to differ.

Since UpBit was raided by Korean officials due to suspected fraud, the price of Bitcoin has been steadily declining. What’s worse is that it continues to make contact with a descending trendline, although it can’t seem to break through.

In addition to this, a multi-month trendline seems to be keeping Bitcoin from rising above the $10,000 level, signifying we may be in a bear trend.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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