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Tensions regarding President Donald J. Trump

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[yt_dropcap type=”square” font=”” size=”14″ color=”#000″ background=”#fff” ] T [/yt_dropcap]he relationship between President Trump and what is usually defined – with Soviet terminology – as the American “deep State” is increasingly complex and conflicting.The reason is easy to explain: Trump wants to avoid having tense relations with the Russian Federation, while the “deep State”, which is largely represented by the 17 US intelligence agencies, wants to restore tough and overall confrontation with Russia, as well as to avoid the materialization of the Russian Eurasian project with China, to regionalize China and finally shut in Russia between the Black Sea and Poland.

This is probably the first time a US President is systematically delegitimized by the media but, above all, indirectly, by the intelligence structures of his country.

The US intelligence is now part and parcel of the political game – a phenomenon regarding also other Western intelligence services – and it operates at intelligence and media levels with well-known techniques: misinformation, media manipulation, fake news, defamation, information destabilization and, we could say, a kind of psychological war against its own country.

The mechanism of the anti-Trump “deep throat” works as follows: an anonymous source, that is probably part and parcel of the President’s Administration, informs both the New York Times and the Washington Post – on alternate days, but with an obviously pre-arranged pace and scheme – of the true or alleged ins and outs and behind-the-scene stories of the President and his main aides.

At this juncture, the news is reported, reiterated and underlined by the CNN and the various national TV channels, thus hitting the headlines of all world media.

I am referring, for example, to the demonstrations staged during the inauguration of the Presidency on January 27, which – as reported by the Democratic media – were coordinated and global, with at least two million participants; to the demonstrations at the beginning of his campaign in mid-June 2016; to the anti-Trump protest in Richmond, Virginia (the former Confederate capital) of October 14; to the systematic and multiple interruptions of the then Republican candidate in Michigan in December, not to mention the attempt to assassinate Trump made on June 18, 2016, by Michael Steven Sanford in Las Vegas.

All signs of a plan orchestrated well before Donald J. Trump rising to power.

Therefore the classic defamation mix is used – even at the trivial aesthetic or symbolic level – so as to later destabilize the current US Presidency with manipulated news triggering real concern and alarm, but always with a precise paradigm in mind: Trump is a “friend of Russia” and hence a sworn enemy of the United States.

Therefore, one of the results of fake news is the creation of the symbolic link between “being friends of the United States” and hence being “enemies of Russia”.

Nothing prevents us from thinking that currently the old “military-industrial establishment” is planning an expensive rearmament, which some naïve people imagine to be a major stimulus for the US economy, only against the Russian Federation.

And this would also explain the continuing information and intelligence destabilization of Trump’s Presidency, which – on the contrary – thinks of a new relationship with Russia, starting from the stabilization of Syria and a new division of the world in areas of influence.

This is exactly the opposite of the strategic policy line of the Democratic candidate and former Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, who had based all her foreign policy and many of her future proposals on overthrowing Bashar el Assad and hence supporting the whole Syrian-Iraqi jihadist galaxy, in strategic correlation with Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Turkey.

As already noted, however, there is an excellent relationship between Russia and Saudi Arabia, which have also correlated their oil prices and are negotiating the sale of Russian weapons to Saudi Arabia, which saw them working effectively in the Syrian conflict.

Nevertheless fake news which, according to a recent study, accounts for 35.8% of all North American political communication, has a very precise historical origin: the denial of the Shoah.

The negationist model with reference to the destruction of European Jews – just to use the title of an old and still useful book by Hilberg – has its own intrinsic logic: non-essential facts and phenomena are brought into the spotlight and a non-objective counterdeduction is developed between these facts and the historical facts, which are selected among the most favorable or harmless ones.

Initially the information manipulation does not deny, but trivializes and diminishes: for example, it is said that the victims of the extermination camps were not six millions – hence, with a sudden leap of logic, it is maintained that the Shoah did not take place.

From few victims to no one and from no one to a fictitious cause of the non-phenomenon, which replaces the real one because it represents a greater amount of “fundamentals”, of fake causes.

In the case of current fake news, however, a false deduction is made on the basis of true and partially true facts – then this deduction replaces the true and real one.

To do so, also the information “noise” is needed, that is, the continuous mass repetition of fake news – another implementation of Talleyrand’s old proverb: “Slander as much as you like, there will always be something left”.

A statement that can be also found in Rossini’s “Barber of Seville” made by Don Basilio.

The Soviet disinformation (dezinformatsja) was completely different: it hid dangerous intentions with benevolent and friendly traits.

It was counterfactual, too, but it did not distort facts, it simply created new and positive ones.

Just think of the propaganda in favor of the new CPSU Secretary of the time, Andropov, who was also Head of the CPSU First Central Directorate.

The new leader “loved jazz”, “read Goethe” and was obsessively defined as a “reformist”.

Even today, in the West, the word “reformist” is a primary instrument of psychological warfare, since it is never specified about which reforms we are talking.

Reverting to current times, in Trump’s case, fake news is immediately believed true because widespread hate is created deliberately against the US President, thus “making false news true”, which, however, fuels further rancor and resentment against Trump even when it is later found to be fake news.

Specialized websites, such as the Palmer Report, disseminate false, unchecked or unverifiable information, such as the actions of some attorneys against the President, which is reported by the media and hence serves as a Pavlovian confirmation of the hatred previously cultivated against Trump himself.

As Pavlov taught us, both hatred and love are “conditioned responses” and news, regardless of its being true or false, strengthens or diminishes the conditioning of a response or reflex, be it conscious or unconscious.

Incidentally, from this viewpoint, the Pavlovian theory of conditioned response is more useful, profound and exhaustive than the Freudian theory of “complex”.

However, the most politically relevant case of fake news is the recent visit paid by Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov to the US President.

In fact, on May 15, the Washington Post reported the unchecked news of Trump disclosing highly classified intelligence to the Russian Foreign Minister, who had met the Head of the US Administration accompanied by the Russian Ambassador, Serghiei Kisliak.

It is also said that Trump “compromised” an Israeli Mossad source by telling Lavrov that Isis-Daesh plans to use laptops and tablets aboard airliners so as to place miniaturized devices into them.

Other more reliable sources tell us that the highly classified information allegedly disclosed by Trump to Lavrov regards the new wide Israeli capabilities of intercepting signals and operational communications.

We also suspect, however, it is already known to Russia, at least by inference, considering the close contacts existing between the Russian forces in Syria and the Israeli military commands.

These new Israeli technologies would allow to monitor also the most secret and confidential military and intelligence operations.

Nevertheless you can feel the discretion, the coldness and the fear of the Israeli services, which are also afraid that the Russian Federation may leak some details of these new technologies to Syria or, even worse, to the Iranian troops operating in Syria.

In the future there is also the possibility of joint operations between the United States and Jordan towards the Syrian territory, considering that the United States does not show to be still satisfied with the new “ceasefire” areas in Syria managed by Russia, Iran and Turkey.

Currently Russia looks at the US American plans for an offensive against Daesh-Isis with much skepticism – plans which are supposed to involve also the Kurds.

Therefore many US media have suggested that the intelligence services linked to the US ones no longer want to collaborate with the United States for fear of being “compromised” in their turn.

Obviously both Netanyahu and Theresa May respond to this hypothesis-fake news by reaffirming the solidity of the relations between their intelligence services and the United States.

Therefore the current tension between Trump and the US “deep tate” is very simple to explain: it is a civil war by other means.

At legal level, however, the US Constitution defines the President as the “Commander-in-Chief”, who can hence disseminate confidential information to anyone he deems useful.

Putin, who is an old executive of the Russian intelligence services, ironized on the matter – during a meeting held with the Italian Prime Minister, Paolo Gentiloni, on May 17 last – by maintaining he could provide the US Congress with even the minutes of the meeting between Trump and Lavrov.

Other unchecked news, triggering suspicion and mistrust – as is often the case with fake news – regards the usual anonymous source disclosing to the New York Times that Trump “tried to obstruct and pervert the course of justice” by putting pressure on the FBI to stop investigating into the possible contacts with Russia of the former National Security Adviser, Michael Flynn.

If, in the past, a judge had accused the Head of the Confidential Affairs Office of the Italian Ministry for Internal Affairs, Federico Umberto d’Amato, of “talking to the Soviets”, he would have been laughed at.

With whom should a national security officer of such an important country speak?

With greengrocers?

You talk also, and above all, with the enemy, because it is with the enemy you must deal, not with the friend.

Hence currently a strange gnostic and puritanical theology looms large in the American mentality, in which any contact with what is considered to be “evil” is denied and forbidden a priori.

Anti-Machiavellianism – unless it is ironic like that of Frederick II of Prussia – creates monsters.

In all likelihood, this is the result – in the specific field of intelligence – of the “closing of the American mind” described by Allan Bloom in 1987.

Reverting to the FBI case, the same anonymous sources report that President Trump “hoped” the FBI Director would “drop the matter” as Flynn is “a good man.”

A different sense, but fake news always refuses nuances and always speaks using the present tense.

Or using the past tense.

Obviously if a US President tried to obstruct and pervert justice, he should be impeached – and this is exactly what the North American “deep State” wishes to achieve as soon as possible, namely making Trump end up like Nixon.

Too much money is involved in some political-military issues. The Saudi and Sunni world pay huge sums and it is worth recalling that Saudi Arabia’s funds to the Clinton Foundation are estimated at 10-25 million US dollars, while the “friends of Saudi Arabia”, co-funded by a local prince, have given another million and later additional 5 million US dollars to the Clinton Foundation.

Kuwait, Qatar (the first funder of Isis-Daesh) and the United Arab Emirates have provided to the Clinton Foundation 5-10 million US dollars, respectively.

Hence the project that Trump is expected to announce on May 22 next (and this is not fake news) of an Arab-Muslim alliance among the 17 Sunni leaders and the United States would not be useless.

For the time being only the Egyptian President has not accepted the proposal of this new “Islamic-Arab NATO” and the clear goal is to pool the efforts of the whole Sunni world against Daesh-Isis and the sword jihad.

Iran also believes that this new alliance is essentially targeted against Iran and the Shiite regions and this, too, is certainly not an analytical mistake.

Reverting to Trump, however, it is hard for him to survive this line of fire of false, manipulated, partially true, malicious or ambiguous news.

For the first time, a great country like the United States destabilizes itself on its own to avoid a regularly elected President managing the political platform with which he won the elections.

As far as we understand, considering the current tensions, in all Western countries the old globalist and globalizing elites want to return to power soon.

As time goes by, the mechanism that generated Brexit, the electoral success of Marine Le Pen in France and of the so-called “populists” – a sloppy and inadequate definition that is also fake news in itself, considering the profound differences existing between countries and parties – as well as the obvious electoral manipulation in Austria, makes us really think that the time of survival for globalist elites is reduced to the minimum.

Hence the desire to act quickly, in all ways and by all means.

Advisory Board Co-chair Honoris Causa Professor Giancarlo Elia Valori is an eminent Italian economist and businessman. He holds prestigious academic distinctions and national orders. Mr. Valori has lectured on international affairs and economics at the world’s leading universities such as Peking University, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and the Yeshiva University in New York. He currently chairs “International World Group”, he is also the honorary president of Huawei Italy, economic adviser to the Chinese giant HNA Group. In 1992 he was appointed Officier de la Légion d’Honneur de la République Francaise, with this motivation: “A man who can see across borders to understand the world” and in 2002 he received the title “Honorable” of the Académie des Sciences de l’Institut de France. “

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Americas

Interpreting the Biden Doctrine: The View From Moscow

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Official White House Photo by Carlos Fyfe

It is the success or failure of remaking America, not Afghanistan, that will determine not just the legacy of the Biden administration, but the future of the United States itself.

The newly unveiled Biden doctrine, which renounces the United States’ post-9/11 policies of remaking other societies and building nations abroad, is a foreign policy landmark. Coming on the heels of the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan, it exudes credibility. Indeed, President Biden’s moves essentially formalize and finalize processes that have been under way for over a decade. It was Barack Obama who first pledged to end America’s twin wars—in Iraq and Afghanistan—started under George W. Bush. It was Donald Trump who reached an agreement with the Taliban on a full U.S. military withdrawal from Afghanistan in 2021. Both Obama and Trump also sought, albeit in strikingly different ways, to redirect Washington’s attention to shoring up the home base.

It is important for the rest of the world to treat the change in U.S. foreign policy correctly. Leaving Afghanistan was the correct strategic decision, if grossly overdue and bungled in the final phases of its implementation. Afghanistan certainly does not mean the end of the United States as a global superpower; it simply continues to be in relative and slow decline. Nor does it spell the demise of American alliances and partnerships. Events in Afghanistan are unlikely to produce a political earthquake within the United States that would topple President Biden. No soul searching of the kind that Americans experienced during the Vietnam War is likely to emerge. Rather, Washington is busy recalibrating its global involvement. It is focusing even more on strengthening the home base. Overseas, the United States is moving from a global crusade in the name of democracy to an active defense of liberal values at home and Western positions abroad.

Afghanistan has been the most vivid in a long series of arguments that persuaded Biden’s White House that a global triumph of liberal democracy is not achievable in the foreseeable future. Thus, remaking problematic countries—“draining the swamp” that breeds terrorism, in the language of the Bush administration—is futile. U.S. military force is a potent weapon, but no longer the means of first resort. The war on terror as an effort to keep the United States safe has been won: in the last twenty years, no major terrorist attacks occurred on U.S. soil. Meantime, the geopolitical, geoeconomic, ideological, and strategic focus of U.S. foreign policy has shifted. China is the main—some say, existential—challenger, and Russia the principal disrupter. Iran, North Korea, and an assortment of radical or extremist groups complete the list of adversaries. Climate change and the pandemic have risen to the top of U.S. security concerns. Hence, the most important foreign policy task is to strengthen the collective West under strong U.S. leadership.

The global economic recession that originated in the United States in 2007 dealt a blow to the U.S.-created economic and financial model; the severe domestic political crisis of 2016–2021 undermined confidence in the U.S. political system and its underlying values; and the COVID-19 disaster that hit the United States particularly hard have all exposed serious political, economic, and cultural issues and fissures within American society and polity. Neglecting the home base while engaging in costly nation-building exercises abroad came at a price. Now the Biden administration has set out to correct that with huge infrastructure development projects and support for the American middle class.

America’s domestic crises, some of the similar problems in European countries, and the growing gap between the United States and its allies during the Trump presidency have produced widespread fears that China and Russia could exploit those issues to finally end U.S. dominance and even undermine the United States and other Western societies from within. This perception is behind the strategy reversal from spreading democracy as far and wide as Russia and China to defending the U.S.-led global system and the political regimes around the West, including in the United States, from Beijing and Moscow.

That said, what are the implications of the Biden doctrine? The United States remains a superpower with enormous resources which is now trying to use those resources to make itself stronger. America has reinvented itself before and may well be able to do so again. In foreign policy, Washington has stepped back from styling itself as the world’s benign hegemon to assume the combat posture of the leader of the West under attack.

Within the collective West, U.S. dominance is not in danger. None of the Western countries are capable of going it alone or forming a bloc with others to present an alternative to U.S. leadership. Western and associated elites remain fully beholden to the United States. What they desire is firm U.S. leadership; what they fear is the United States withdrawing into itself. As for Washington’s partners in the regions that are not deemed vital to U.S. interests, they should know that American support is conditional on those interests and various circumstances. Nothing new there, really: just ask some leaders in the Middle East. For now, however, Washington vows to support and assist exposed partners like Ukraine and Taiwan.

Embracing isolationism is not on the cards in the United States. For all the focus on domestic issues, global dominance or at least primacy has firmly become an integral part of U.S. national identity. Nor will liberal and democratic ideology be retired as a major driver of U.S. foreign policy. The United States will not become a “normal” country that only follows the rules of realpolitik. Rather, Washington will use values as a glue to further consolidate its allies and as a weapon to attack its adversaries. It helps the White House that China and Russia are viewed as malign both across the U.S. political spectrum and among U.S. allies and partners, most of whom have fears or grudges against either Moscow or Beijing.

In sum, the Biden doctrine does away with engagements that are no longer considered promising or even sustainable by Washington; funnels more resources to address pressing domestic issues; seeks to consolidate the collective West around the United States; and sharpens the focus on China and Russia as America’s main adversaries. Of all these, the most important element is domestic. It is the success or failure of remaking America, not Afghanistan, that will determine not just the legacy of the Biden administration, but the future of the United States itself.

From our partner RIAC

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AUKUS aims to perpetuate the Anglo-Saxon supremacy

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Image credit: ussc.edu.au

On September 15, U.S. President Joe Biden worked with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison together to unveil a trilateral alliance among Australia-U.K.-U.S. (AUKUS), which are the major three among the Anglo-Saxon nations (also including Canada and New Zealand). Literally, each sovereign state has full right to pursue individual or collective security and common interests. Yet, the deal has prompted intense criticism across the world including the furious words and firm acts from the Atlantic allies in Europe, such as France that is supposed to lose out on an $40-billion submarine deal with Australia to its Anglo-Saxon siblings—the U.K. and the U.S.

               Some observers opine that AUKUS is another clear attempt by the U.S. and its allies aggressively to provoke China in the Asia-Pacific, where Washington had forged an alliance along with Japan, India and Australia in the name of the Quad. AUKUS is the latest showcase that three Anglo-Saxon powers have pretended to perpetuate their supremacy in all the key areas such as geopolitics, cybersecurity, artificial intelligence, and quantum computing. In short, the triple deal is a move designed to discourage or thwart any future Chinese bid for regional hegemony. But diplomatically its impacts go beyond that. As French media argued that the United States, though an ally of France, just backstabs it by negotiating AUKUS in secret without revealing the plan. Given this, the deal among AUKUS actually reflects the mentality of the Anglo-Saxon nations’ superiority over others even if they are not outrageously practicing an imperialist policy in the traditional way.

               Historically, there are only two qualified global powers which the Europeans still sometimes refer to as “Anglo-Saxon” powers: Great Britain and the United States. As Walter Mead once put it that the British Empire was, and the United States is, concerned not just with the balance of power in one particular corner of the world, but with the evolution of what it is today called “world order”. Now with the rise of China which has aimed to become a global power with its different culture and political views from the current ruling powers, the Anglo-Saxon powers have made all efforts to align with the values-shared allies or partners to create the strong bulwarks against any rising power, like China and Russia as well. Physically, either the British Empire or the United States did or does establish a worldwide system of trade and finance which have enabled the two Anglo-Saxon powers to get rich and advanced in high-technologies. As a result, those riches and high-tech means eventually made them execute the power to project their military force that ensure the stability of their-dominated international systems. Indeed the Anglo-Saxon powers have had the legacies to think of their global goals which must be bolstered by money and foreign trade that in turn produces more wealth. Institutionally, the Anglo-Saxon nations in the world—the U.S., the U.K, Canada, Australia and New Zealand—have formed the notorious “Five eyes alliance” to collect all sorts of information and data serving their common core interests and security concerns.

This is not just rhetoric but an objective reflection of the mentality as Australian Foreign Minister Payne candidly revealed at the press conference where she said that the contemporary state of their alliance “is well suited to cooperate on countering economic coercion.” The remarks imply that AUKUS is a military response to the rising economic competition from China because politics and economics are intertwined with each other in power politics, in which military means acts in order to advance self-interested economic ends. In both geopolitical and geoeconomic terms, the rise of China, no matter how peaceful it is, has been perceived as the “systematic” challenges to the West’s domination of international relations and global economy, in which the Anglo-Saxon superiority must remain. Another case is the U.S. efforts to have continuously harassed the Nord Stream 2 project between Russia and Germany.

Yet, in the global community of today, any superpower aspiring for pursuing “inner clique” like AUKUS will be doomed to fail. First, we all are living in the world “where the affairs of each country are decided by its own people, and international affairs are run by all nations through consultation,” as President Xi put it. Due to this, many countries in Asia warn that AUKUS risks provoking a nuclear arms race in the Asian-Pacific region. The nuclear factor means that the U.S. efforts to economically contain China through AUKUS on nationalist pretexts are much more dangerous than the run-up to World War I. Yet, neither the United States nor China likes to be perceived as “disturbing the peace” that Asian countries are eager to preserve. In reality, Asian countries have also made it clear not to take either side between the power politics.

Second, AUKUS’s deal jeopardizes the norms of international trade and treaties. The reactions of third parties is one key issue, such as the French government is furious about the deal since it torpedoes a prior Australian agreement to purchase one dozen of conventional subs from France. Be aware that France is a strong advocate for a more robust European Union in the world politics. Now the EU is rallying behind Paris as in Brussels EU ambassadors agreed to postpone preparations for an inaugural trade and technology council on September 29 with the U.S. in Pittsburgh. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen declared in a strong manner that “since one of our member states has been treated in a way that is not acceptable, so we need to know what happened and why.” Michael Roth, Germany’s minister for European affairs, went even further as he put it, “It is once again a wake-up call for all of us in the European Union to ask ourselves how we can strengthen our sovereignty, how we can present a united front even on issues relevant to foreign and security policy.” It is the time for the EU to talk with one voice and for the need to work together to rebuild mutual trust among the allies.

Third, the deal by AUKUS involves the nuclear dimension. It is true that the three leaders have reiterated that the deal would be limited to the transfer of nuclear propulsion technology (such as reactors to power the new subs) but not nuclear weapons technology. Accordingly, Australia remains a non-nuclear country not armed with such weapons. But from a proliferation standpoint, that is a step in the direction of more extensive nuclear infrastructure. It indicates the United States and the U.K. are willing to transfer highly sensitive technologies to close allies. But the issue of deterrence in Asia-and especially extended deterrence-is extremely complicated since it will become ore so as China’s nuclear arsenal expands. If the security environment deteriorates in the years ahead, U.S. might consider allowing its core allies to gain nuclear capabilities and Australia is able to gain access to this technology as its fleet expands. Yet, it also means that Australia is not a non-nuclear country any more.

In brief, the deal itself and the triple alliance among AUKUS will take some years to become a real threat to China or the ruling authorities of the country. But the deal announced on Sept. 15 will complicate Chinese efforts to maintain a peaceful rise and act a responsible power. Furthermore, the deal and the rationales behind it is sure to impede China’s good-will to the members of AUKUS and the Quad, not mention of their irresponsible effects on peace and prosperity in the Asia-Pacific region.

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Was Trump better for the world than Biden, after all?

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Joe Biden
Official White House Photo by Adam Schultz

Joe Biden and the State Department just approved a major deal with the Saudis for 500mln in choppers maintanance. Effectively, the US sold its soul to the Saudis again after the US intelligence services confirmed months ago that the Saudi Prince is responsible for the brutal killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. The Biden administration is already much more inhumane and much worse than Trump. Biden doesn’t care about the thousands of American citizens that he left behind at the mercy of the Taliban, the Biden administration kills innocent civilians in drone strikes, they are in bed with the worst of the worsts human right violators calling them friendly nations. 

Biden dropped and humiliated France managing to do what no US President has ever accomplished —  make France pull out its Ambassador to the US, and all this only to go bother China actively seeking the next big war. Trump’s blunders were never this big. And this is just the beginning. There is nothing good in store for America and the world with Biden. All the hope is quickly evaporating, as the world sees the actions behind the fake smile and what’s behind the seemingly right and restrained rhetoric on the surface. It’s the actions that matter. Trump talked tough talk for which he got a lot of criticism and rarely resorted to military action. Biden is the opposite: he says all the right things but the actions behind are inhumane and destructive. It makes you wonder if Trump wasn’t actually better for the world.

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