Guest Analyses

Caspian games: Central Asian ‘stans’ vie for connectivity market

by Pepe Escobar (cross-posted with the Asia Times by special agreement with the author) Azerbaijan held a presidential election this month. Predictably, incumbent leader Ilham Aliyev won his fourth consecutive term with a Kim dynasty-esque 86% of the votes. International monitors for the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) stressed “widespread disregard for mandatory procedures, numerous instances of serious irregularities and lack

Capitalism is not the problem

Capitalism is not the problem. Capitalism is an Abstraction. The Criminal and War Economy is the problem. YOU are the Solution. by Cameron Pike for The Saker blog Capitalism is a very loosely defined term. When you look up the definition in the dictionary and compare it to Marx’ description in the context of leftist discourse today, it has become a catch-all and vague phrase which implies that all private

Sweet Cuban sugar, bitter French whine

by Ramin Mazaheri for The Saker Blog I have no idea why the French are such a very bitter people. Americans, I could understand: Their people are absolutely thrown to the wolves in just about every societal way possible. Half of every one of their cities are “no-go zones”, at this very moment some schoolkid is oiling up his automatic rifle and tightening up his assault plans of Mr. O’Grady’s

The Cultural Revolution’s solving of the urban-rural divide

by Ramin Mazaheri for The Saker Blog If there is one thing the election of Donald Trump showed the United States it’s that there is an enormous urban-rural divide. That’s not true at all…. The US “discovered” this exact same problem following the elections of Bill Clinton and Dubya Bush: rural voters found Clinton immoral, urban voters found Bush immoral – open support for either president made one immoral. Both

A Curious Incident Part XI

by Sushi for The Saker blog The Special Relationship If we examine the position of the UK on the world stage, we observe a pattern of prolonged decline from the august position of imperial hegemon. After the great heights of empire, the UK found itself exhausted and diminished at the end WWII. The Suez crisis of 1956 marked “the end of Great Britain’s role as one of the world’s major

In pursuit of President Xi Jinping’s, “Socialism with Chinese Characteristics.”

By Anne Teoh for the  Saker Blog China, China : Part III In pursuit of President Xi Jinping’s, “Socialism with Chinese Characteristics.” Modern Chinese history did not evolve in isolation; there were influences from countries like Soviet Russia (up to a point when Soviet technical aid with the Wuhan Bridge construction left with the blueprints), Eastern Europe and the US. However, following an eclectic reading of China’s modern leaders and

After Washington’s aggression: Syria will win

By Aram Mirzaei for the Saker blog One week after the latest US aggression against Syria, the Syrian Army and its allies have spared no efforts in continuing their raging fight against terrorism. Douma was liberated last week, right after Washington and its vassals bombed Syria to “save lives”, and on Tuesday reports emerged that jihadist militants of the besieged city of Al-Dumayr, further east of Damascus, have agreed to

Syria, Iran and ‘chaos in international relations’

by Pepe Escobar (cross-posted with the Asia Times by special agreement with the author) Even in the context of a post-truth geopolitical environment run amok, Russian President Vladimir Putin telling his Iranian counterpart Hassan Rouhani over the phone that any further Western strikes against Syria may “lead to chaos in international relations” should at least be seen for what it is; a massive understatement. According to the Kremlin, Putin and

Reporting from Cuba: The world awaits a ‘Cuban RT’ or ‘Cuban PressTV’

by Ramin Mazaheri for The Saker Blog Cuba seems to be the natural spokesperson of the global left. Just 100 kilometers from the US, everybody knows they have bravely stood up to the murderous bully that is the United States for nearly 60 years. Pound for pound, who else has such an exemplary record of internationalism? Cuba gives until it hurts, and we all know it. South Africa would certainly

A Curious Incident Part X

by Sushi for The Saker Blog Introduction On April 14 the Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov revealed an OPCW laboratory had detected the presence of the Chemical Warfare Agent (CWA) named BZ in samples collected by the OPCW technical team in Salisbury England during the period March 21 to 23. Those with an interest in the Skripal affair are attempting to re-frame the issues and determine: 1) the nature of

Mao’s legacy defended, and famous swim decoded, for clueless academics

by Ramin Mazaheri for The Saker blog Part 4 will take a very different tack…. There is a great and hilarious story about Mao during the Cultural Revolution, which is relayed in the Western university-standard textbook, China: A New History by “the West’s doyen on China” – John King Fairbank. In late 1965 the rumblings of the Cultural Revolution had begun, due to grumblings over corruption, revisionism (“taking the capitalist

Ask yourselves: Are we the bad guys?

by R.Lesnoix for The Saker blog One can fault the British for many things but not for their sense of humour. Some time ago I saw a sketch by the comedy duo Mitchell and Webb. They played two German soldiers, sitting in a fortified position at the front, enjoying the relative quiet of the moment. They were dressed in SS uniforms. In that typically British roundabout way of starting an

Washington strikes Syria again: was that it?

By Aram Mirzaei for The Saker Blog Last night, Washington together with its British and French vassals launched an attack on Syria after days of threats and speculation. Initial reports seem to indicate that over 100 missiles were fired into areas of the Damascus and Homs provinces. It was expected that the strikes would occur before the weekend and the Syrian military had been placed on high alert on Friday

A Curious Incident Part IX

bu Sushi for the Saker Blog Observations on the OPCW Report The OPCW report dated April 12th, 2018 was released in two versions. The minimal public version is available here. The full report is only being made available to State Parties and will likely make its way into the public domain at a later date. The OPCW public report contains a surprising amount of information if you know what to

Why even a trade war won’t derail Made in China 2025

by Pepe Escobar (cross-posted with the Asia Times by special agreement with the author) Designed to calm down fears of an ominous US-China trade war, President Xi Jinping’s speech at the Boao Forum, crammed with Chinese metaphors, was the logical extension of his landmark address to Davos early last year – when he established China at the vanguard of globalization 2.0. At the Boao Forum, Xi stressed a “new phase

China must walk the talk and support Russia

by Ghassan Kadi for The Saker Blog When Chinese Defence Minister, General Wei Fenghe visited Moscow on the 4th of April 2018 and made his historic comment that he was in Moscow to give a message to America that China stands by Russia (http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-04-04/chinas-new-defence-chief-visits-russia-to-send-a-message-to-us/9616216), he put China in a new and unprecedented global position, because China had never made such direct statements about the USA since the early days of

Meditations on Skripal

by Jimmie Moglia for the Saker blog Parisians, and those who roam the streets of Paris to take upon themselves the Frenchness of things, will no doubt know or remember the elegant, historic and fashionable Place Vendome. There is a history in all men’s lives and in what they built. In the instance, however, I only refer to the Duke of Vendome, (1654-1712), in whose honor the square is named.

Poison Gas – Weapon of Choice for “False News”

by Peter Koenig for the Saker blog Poison gas is not only deadly, it often provokes a slow suffocating death. That, perpetrated on innocent children, is particularly cruel. But when such poison gas attacks are mere false flags, or by the new term, “false news”, and are used to provoke war, perhaps an all annihilating war, then humanity has turned to what it never should have become – a lowly-lowly

The Qur’an, the Great War, and the West

Dear friends, Today, with the kind permission of my dear friend Sheikh Imran Hosein, I am post his monograph “The Qur’an, the Great War in the West“.  Not being a Muslim myself, I obviously take no position on the Sheikh’s interpretation of the Qur’an, as that is something which only an educated Muslim could do.  Likewise, I would request the same of you, especially if you are not religious at

The Russians Are Flabbergasted

by Israel Shamir (cross-posted with the Unz Review by special agreement with the author) President Trump is so pissed off by the Stormy affair that he is likely to prefer a good old war to another humiliation. This suits his enemies and friends (though not his voters) to a tee. He has a choice of doing a difficult manly act that needs all his courage, but which one? Should he

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