Wednesday 29th of November 2023

beware: the grownup is mad.....

War power NATO stretches its tentacles towards neutral Switzerland      by Dr iur. Marianne Wüthrich 

 

The world order is in a state of upheaval, from a “rule-based order”, imposed by the Western powers on numerous other countries, to a community of nations with equal rights. As is well known, Switzerland has also been caught up in a large-scale maelstrom. To prevent our unique model from being bogged by the blocs of the EU and NATO and thus sunk into the chaos of war, we need to close ranks and to play ball – which is unfortunately not clear to all Swiss. The latest action against our sovereignty and neutrality is the planned opening of a NATO “liaison office” in Geneva. Although no formal request has yet been made, the Federal Council and its administration are already in their starting blocks to “welcome” the war alliance to neutral Switzerland. This was reported by most Swiss media on 11 October (for example, “Tages-Anzeiger”, “Blick”, Handelszeitung, “20 Minuten”, but also Austrian television ORF and Radio Liechtenstein).

 

What business does the war alliance NATO have in Geneva, the city of peace?

On the Federal Council’s homepage, one looks in vain for a reference to this absolute no-go. Answering the question of the media, the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA) states that it is not a “bilateral office of an alliance with official Switzerland”, but “a liaison office between NATO and international and non-governmental organisations based in Geneva”.1
  So much the worse! In other words, it is about a centre of the Western war alliance wanting to connect itself to neutral Switzerland, bypassing our authorities, in order to tighten its net. Already in July, after the Vilnius summit, NATO announced in point 86 of its communiqué: “We are examining the possibility of establishing a liaison office in Geneva in order to further strengthen our engagement with the United Nations and other relevant international organisations.”2 As if the world did not have enough experience with NATO’s “engagement” – or rather its terrible wars. And why do we, the Swiss citizens, hear about this “office” only now, when we are practically facing the fait accompli? Who can say they would read point 86 of a communiqué if it was not actually spelled out for them? The “Tages-Anzeiger” comments on this tactic: “The note is inconspicuous and well hidden. But for Switzerland it has political explosive power.” Yes, indeed!

 

Federal privileges for a NATO centre with an unknown mission? 

The diligently used label “neutral” does nothing to whitewash those of the Federal Council’s actions which are contrary to neutrality. The FDFA claims that the opening of a NATO liaison office in Switzerland is “not a problem in terms of neutrality law [...] because the defence alliance represents an intergovernmental organisation according to the Swiss Host State Act”. Actually, the word should have spread even in Federal Bern that NATO is no longer a “defence alliance”, at least since its war of aggression against Yugoslavia, but that it is a warring party in numerous wars outside its territory.
  Switzerland created the Host State Act3 as a contribution by our neutral country to the promotion of cooperation in the world community. It lays the legal foundations for the support of the ICRC and the numerous UN organisations that have their headquarters in Geneva, but also for many other domestic and foreign cultural, humanitarian and economic organisations in Switzerland that are dedicated to the cooperation of countries and peoples in the most diverse areas, as well as for international conferences and arbitration tribunals. The law regulates “the granting of privileges, immunities and facilities” as well as “financial contributions” by Switzerland (Art. 1 para. 1) to such organisations.
  If Switzerland were to grant hospitality to the NATO war alliance, this would consequently mean that its employees in Switzerland would have a free hand to fulfil their mission from across the Atlantic. That mission is unknown to us. Moreover, they would not even be subject to the Swiss rule of law, but would benefit from far-reaching privileges such as immunity from prosecution or tax exemption (Art. 3), which have been established for the ICRC and the UN organisations. Surely the Federal Council cannot be serious about that!

 

Critical voices in politics and the media remind the Federal Council of Switzerland’s neutrality 

Beni Gafner, Federal Palace editor of the Swiss newspaper “Tages-Anzeiger”, is surprised by the Federal Council’s statement that a NATO centre in Geneva would “not affect neutrality”.4 Gafner states, on the other hand, that “in public, the federal government gives the impression that in the form of NATO it wants to bring another peace organisation to Geneva – a kind of aid organisation that is there for everyone, regardless of party. But this is not the case, because NATO is a defence alliance under the command of the USA – and a military opponent for countries like Russia or China.” Because the USA is “the absolutely dominant military power” within NATO, says Gafner, approval by the Federal Council of the NATO base in Geneva would “bring Switzerland dangerously close to the USA”. The editor points out that “a permanent NATO presence in our country has not been on the table so far” for Switzerland, because “our priority was to enable neutral mediation between warring parties”. Therefore, he calls on the Federal Council to thoroughly consider “what exactly a NATO presence would mean for Switzerland as a mediator”.
  This can only be agreed with. Geneva, the city of peace, has so far been available as a neutral location for good offices for all states and peoples in situations of war and conflict, and this is how it should remain. There is no room for NATO’s efforts to stretch its tentacles into peace and human rights organisations. It is embarrassing that we have to remind the Federal Council of this.
  For National Councillor Franz Grüter (SVP), President of the Foreign Affairs Committee (FAC-N), it is also clear that Switzerland “as an independent, neutral country” must not be a location for NATO. SP National Councillor Fabian Molina, too, is “critical of the opening of an official NATO office in Geneva”.5
  However, other Swiss parliamentarians quoted in the same newspaper article6 offer little thought-out arguments in favour of a NATO centre in Geneva: “The NATO presence would strengthen international Geneva,” claims National Councillor Andrea Gmür (the Centre) boldly, while liberal security politician Maja Riniker openly admits: “The location would correspond to the rapprochement with NATO that the FDP (the Liberals) is calling for.” (By the way, Riniker came up with the idea of circumventing the ban on the further delivery of Swiss weapons with a con trick: We sell Leopard tanks to Germany, which keeps them and sends its own Leopards to Ukraine). The green national councillor Nicolas Waldertakes the biscuit: if Switzerland were to offer NATO the opportunity to “make contact” with the ICRC and the UN in Geneva, this could have a “positive effect on NATO troops’ compliance with international humanitarian law”. Tell that to the marines! (Don’t talk nonsense).

 

It is still possible to stop!

What happens next? When asked, National Councillor Franz Grüter confirmed a newspaper report that it was up to the Federal Council to decide on the opening of the NATO centre. All they have to do is consult the Foreign Affairs Committees (FAC) of both chambers of parliament beforehand. Grüter plans to submit a proposal to stop the request in the winter session.  •

 

https://www.zeit-fragen.ch/en/archives/2023/nr-23-31-oktober-2023/die-kriegsmacht-nato-streckt-ihre-tentakel-nach-der-neutralen-schweiz-aus

 

 

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the US need war.....

Why the US Needs This War in Gaza


BY PEPE ESCOBAR

 

The Global South was expecting the Dawn of a New Arabian Reality.

After all, the Arab street – even while repressed in their home nations – has pulsed with protests expressing ferocious rage against Israel’s wholesale massacre of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.

Arab leaders were forced to take some sort of action beyond suspending a few ambassadorships with Israel, and called for a special Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) summit to discuss the ongoing Israeli War Against Palestinian Children.

Representatives of 57 Muslim states convened in Riyadh on 11 November to deliver a serious, practical blow against genocidal practitioners and enablers. But in the end, nothing was offered, not even solace.

The OIC’s final statement will always be enshrined in the Gilded Palace of Cowardice. Highlights of the tawdry rhetorical show: we oppose Israel’s “self-defense;” we condemn the attack on Gaza; we ask (who?) not to sell weapons to Israel; we request the kangaroo ICC to “investigate” war crimes; we request a UN resolution condemning Israel.

For the record, that’s the best 57 Muslim-majority countries could drum up in response to this 21st-century genocide.

History, even if written by victors, tends to be unforgiving towards cowards.

The Top Four Cowards, in this instance, are Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain, and Morrocco – the latter three having normalized relations with Israel under a heavy US hand in 2020. These are the ones that consistently blocked serious measures from being adopted at the OIC summit, such as the Algerian draft proposal for an oil ban on Israel, plus banning the use of Arab airspace to deliver weapons to the occupation state.

Egypt and Jordan – longtime Arab vassals – were also non-committal, as well as Sudan, which is in the middle of a civil war. Turkiye, under Sultan Recep Tayyip Erdogan, once again showed it is all talk and no action; a neo-Ottoman parody of the Texan “all hat, no cattle.”

BRICS or IMEC? 

The Top Four Cowards deserve some scrutiny. Bahrain is a lowly vassal hosting a key branch of the US Empire of Bases. Morocco has close relations with Tel Aviv – it sold out quickly after an Israeli promise to recognize Rabat’s claim on Western Sahara. Moreover, Morocco heavily depends on tourism, mainly from the collective west.

Then we have the big dogs, Saudi Arabia and the UAE. Both are stacked to the rafters with American weaponry, and, like Bahrain, also host US military bases. Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman (MbS) and his old mentor, Emirati ruler Mohammad bin Zayed (MbZ), do factor in the threat of color revolutions tearing through their regal domains if they deviate too much from the accepted imperial script.

But in a few weeks, starting on 1 January, 2024, under a Russian presidency, both Riyadh and Abu Dhabi will expand their horizons big-time by officially becoming members of the BRICS 11.

Saudi Arabia and UAE were only admitted into the expanded BRICS because of careful geopolitical and geoeconomic calculations by the Russia-China strategic partnership.

Along with Iran – which happens to have its own strategic partnership with both Russia and China – Riyadh and Abu Dhabi are supposed to reinforce the energy clout of the BRICS sphere and be key players, further on down the road, in the de-dollarization drive whose ultimate aim is to bypass the petrodollar.

Yet, at the same time, Riyadh and Abu Dhabi also stand to benefit immensely from the not-so-secret 1963 plan to build the Ben Gurion canal, from the Gulf of Aqaba to the Eastern Mediterranean, arriving – what a coincidence – very close to now devastated northern Gaza.

The canal would allow Israel to become a key energy transit hub, dislodging Egypt’s Suez Canal, and that happens to dovetail nicely with Israel’s role as the de facto key node in the latest chapter of the War of Economic Corridors: the US-concocted India-MidEast Corridor (IMEC).

IMEC is a quite perverse acronym, as is the whole logic behind this fantastical corridor, which is to position international law-breaking Israel as a critical trade hub and even energy provider between Europe, part of the Arab world, and India.

That was also the logic behind Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s UN charade in September, where he flashed the whole “international community” a map of the “New Middle East” in which Palestine had been totally erased.

All of the above assumes that IMEC and the Ben Gurion Canal will be built – which is not a given by any realistic standards.

Back to the vote at the OIC, US minions Egypt and Jordan – two countries on Israel’s western and eastern borders, respectively – were in the toughest position of them all. The occupation state wished to push approximately 4.5 million Palestinians into their borders for good. But Cairo and Amman, also awash in US weapons and financially bankrupt as they come, would never survive US sanctions if they lean too unacceptably towards Palestine.

So, in the end, too many Muslim states choosing humiliation over righteousness were thinking in very narrow, pragmatic, national interest terms. Geopolitics is pitiless. It is all about natural resources and markets. If you don’t have one, you need the other, and if you have none, a Hegemon dictates what you’re allowed to have.

The Arab and Muslim street – and the Global Majority – may rightfully feel dejected when they see how these “leaders” are not ready to turn the Islamic world into a real power pole within emerging multipolarity.

It wouldn’t happen any other way. Many key Arab states are not Sovereign entities. They are all boxed in, victims of a vassal mentality. They’re not ready – yet – for their close-up facing History. And sadly, they still remain hostage to their own “century of humiliation.”

The humiliating coup de grace was dispatched by none other than the Tel Aviv genocidal maniac himself: he threatened everyone in the Arab world if they don’t shut up – which they already did.

 

Of course, there are very important Arab and Muslim brave-hearts in Iran, Syria, Palestine, Iraq, Lebanon, and Yemen. While not a majority by any means, these Resistance actors reflect the sentiment on the Street like no other. And with Israel’s war expanding each day, their regional and global clout is set to increase immeasurably, just as in all of the Hegemon’s other regional wars.

 

Strangling a new century in the cradle 

The catastrophic debacle of Project Ukraine and the revival of an intractable West Asian war are deeply intertwined.

Beyond the fog of Washington’s “worry” about Tel Aviv’s genocidal rampage, the crucial fact is that we are right in the thick of a war against BRICS 11.

The Empire does not do strategy; at best, it does tactical business plans on the fly. There are two immediate tactics in play: a US Armada deployed in the Eastern Mediterranean – in a failed effort to intimidate Resistance Axis behemoths Iran and Hezbollah – and a possible Milei election in Argentina tied to his avowed promise to break Brazil-Argentina relations.

So this is a simultaneous attack on BRICS 11 on two fronts: West Asia and South America. There will be no American efforts spared to prevent BRICS 11 from getting close to OPEC+. A key aim is to instill fear in Riyadh and Abu Dhabi – as confirmed by Persian Gulf business sources.

Even vassal leaders at the OIC show would have been aware that we are now deep into The Empire Strikes Back. That also largely explains their cowardice.

They know that for the Hegemon, multipolarity equals “chaos,” unipolarity equals “order,” and malign actors equal “autocrats” – such as the new Russian-Chinese-Iranian “Axis of Evil” and anyone, especially vassals, that opposes the “rules-based international order.”

And that brings us to a tale of two ceasefires. Tens of millions across the Global Majority are asking why the Hegemon is desperate for a ceasefire in Ukraine while flatly refusing a ceasefire in Palestine.

Freezing Project Ukraine preserves the Ghost of Hegemony just a little bit longer. Let’s assume Moscow would take the bait (it won’t). But to freeze Ukraine in Europe, the Hegemon will need an Israeli win in Gaza – perhaps at any and all costs – to maintain even a vestige of its former glory.

But can Israel achieve victory any more than Ukraine can? Tel Aviv may have already lost the war on 7 October as it can never regain its facade of invincibility. And if this transforms into a regional war that Israel loses, the US will lose its Arab vassals overnight, who today have a Chinese and Russian option waiting in the wings.

The Roar of the Street is getting louder – demanding that the Biden administration, now seen as complicit with Tel Aviv, halt the Israeli genocide that may lead to a World War. But Washington will not comply. Wars in Europe and West Asia may be its last chance (it will lose) to subvert the emergence of a prosperous, connected, peaceful Eurasia Century.

 

https://www.unz.com/pescobar/why-the-us-needs-this-war-in-gaza/

 

 

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biden shares.......

Submitted by the Washington Post

In a Washington Post Opinions piece today, President Joe Biden shares his view on the role of the U.S. in the Israel-Gaza war and other major conflicts like the war in Ukraine: “Both Putin and Hamas are fighting to wipe a neighboring democracy off the map. And both Putin and Hamas hope to collapse broader regional stability and integration and take advantage of the ensuing disorder. America cannot, and will not, let that happen. For our own national security interests — and for the good of the entire world,” he writes.

Read the full piece here. Additional excerpts below:

  1. The United States is the essential nation. We rally allies and partners to stand up to aggressors and make progress toward a brighter, more peaceful future. The world looks to us to solve the problems of our time. That is the duty of leadership, and America will lead. For if we walk away from the challenges of today, the risk of conflict could spread, and the costs to address them will only rise. We will not let that happen. That conviction is at the root of my approach to supporting the people of Ukraine as they continue to defend their freedom against Putin’s brutal war.
  2. We have also seen throughout history how conflicts in the Middle East can unleash consequences around the globe. We stand firmly with the Israeli people as they defend themselves against the murderous nihilism of Hamas.
  3. The Palestinian people deserve a state of their own and a future free from Hamas.  I, too, am heartbroken by the images out of Gaza and the deaths of many thousands of civilians, including children.
  4. Our goal should not be simply to stop the war for today — it should be to end the war forever, break the cycle of unceasing violence, and build something stronger in Gaza and across the Middle East so that history does not keep repeating itself.
  5. A two-state solution — two peoples living side by side with equal measures of freedom, opportunity and dignity — is where the road to peace must lead. Reaching it will take commitments from Israelis and Palestinians, as well as from the United States and our allies and partners. That work must start now. To that end, the United States has proposed basic principles for how to move forward from this crisis, to give the world a foundation on which to build.
  1. As we strive for peace, Gaza and the West Bank should be reunited under a single governance structure, ultimately under a revitalized Palestinian Authority, as we all work toward a two-state solution. I have been emphatic with Israel’s leaders that extremist violence against Palestinians in the West Bank must stop and that those committing the violence must be held accountable. The United States is prepared to take our own steps, including issuing visa bans against extremists attacking civilians in the West Bank.
  1. As long as Hamas clings to their ideology of destruction, a cease-fire is not peace.

https://www.theinteldrop.org/2023/11/18/wapo-opinions-joe-biden-the-u-s-wont-back-down-from-the-challenge-of-putin-and-hamas/

 

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A CESASEFIRE IS NEVER PEACE BUT A HALT TO THE BLOODSHED.... IT'S BETTER THAN BOMBING HOSPITAL AND SCHOOLS....

 

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Zensur....

On 11 October 2023, the weekly Weltwoche reported that the Swiss Federal Intelligence Service, the NDB, had recorded our newspaper Zeit-Fragen/Current Concerns/Horizons et débats in a memorandum classified as ‘confidential’. Weltwoche, published in Zurich, rightly refers to a ‘fiche’, the Swiss term for a secret file. We have a copy of this document, dated 29 September 2023. In it, the authorities claim that Zeit-Fragen is spreading Russian ‘disinformation’ and ‘propaganda’. There is no mention of evidence or facts in support of these claims.
  The ‘hook’ or occasion for this assertion is an article by Scott Ritter, the noted American commentator, that first appeared in the US at the beginning of September 2023 and was subsequently translated and published by both Weltwoche and Zeit–Fragen and its translated editions. Ritter’s topic is Swiss neutrality. He emphasises its value and its importance for peace in the world. He is critical of the attempt by the US ambassador to Bern, Scott Miller, to interfere in Switzerland’s internal affairs by exerting intense and concentrated pressure in a diplomatically unacceptable manner.
  Scott Ritter was an officer in the US Marines and subsequently a UN weapons inspector. Since the US invasion of Iraq in March 2003, which was against international law, he has been an internationally known critic of US foreign policy – not least out of genuine attachment to his country.
  Ritter wrote the article after he had been to Switzerland to deliver lectures at a conference sponsored by “Mut zur Ethik” and, while there, had spoken to numerous Swiss citizens about the country’s neutrality. He was outraged by America’s attacks on the principle of neutrality. His travel costs and expenses, it bears mentioning in the interest of clarity and transparency, were covered by the Swiss citizens who invited him to speak – not, as was wildly imagined in certain circles, by Russia.
  We state in this regard:

  • The creation of secret files by the NDB is a blatant violation of the freedom of opinion and freedom of the media as guaranteed under human rights law and in Articles 16 and 17 of the Swiss Federal Constitution
  • For years, about 90 per cent of Swiss citizens have repeatedly spoken out in favour of Swiss neutrality. Originating from the long history of the Swiss Confederation, our neutrality is part of the political core of our federal state, but is currently under massive attack from certain circles. The NDB is obviously making itself a stooge of these circles with its creation of secret files on Zeit-Fragen
  • Where are we today if the commitment to our neutrality is dismissed by our own intelligence service as Russian disinformation and propaganda? This is a political and constitutional scandal – unworthy of a democracy and an indictment of certain authorities in our country.
  • The origin of the pressure is an open secret and has become common knowledge. It does not come from Russia. 
  • Zeit-Fragen/Current Concerns/Horizons et débats represents a journalistic ethic according to which it is not sufficient that only one opinion should have its say in a society: Different points of view and assessments must have a place. Without pluralism in the media landscape and freedom of the press, free public discussion and debate is not possible. We have deliberately organised ourselves as a cooperative, and all members work on a voluntary basis, because, as writers and editors, we value our independence – financially, yes, but also to protect our freedom to express our opinions. We do not allow ourselves to be roped in by anyone.

The editors.

 

https://www.zeit-fragen.ch/en

 

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