RT: Sanctions against Russia ‘violate’ core principles of WTO – Putin

President Vladimir Putin at the Russian State Council meeting in the Kremlin

President Vladimir Putin has said that sanctions against Russia directly violate World Trade Organization (WTO) principles, and that Russia will continue to defend its economy with protective measures.

The sanctions violate the main principles of equal access for all WTO members to economic activity and access to goods and services in the market, Putin said at a meeting with advisers in the Kremlin on Thursday.

“The limitations introduced against our country are nothing but a violation by some of our partners of the basic principles of the WTO,” the President said, adding that sanctions “undermine free enterprise competition.”

On September 12, the US and EU expanded sanctions against Russia aimed at hurting Russia’s main industry – oil. The US and EU have led sanctions against Russia, along with Japan, Australia, Switzerland, and others over Moscow’s alleged meddling in the Ukraine conflict.

READ MORE: Russia to appeal against US, EU sanctions to WTO

The best way for Russia to counter these unfair advantages is to develop its domestic market, the President said.

“In response, we took protective measures, and I would like to stress that they are protective; they are not the result of our desire to punish any of our partners or influence their decision in any way.”

Russia introduced protective measures over food supplies on August 7 in response to Western sanctions. The Kremlin and White House sanctions tit-for-tat has been escalating since March, when Crimea voted to rejoin Russia.

The food ban is due to only last a year, but at today’s meeting the President said that Russia needs to focus on increasing its market competitiveness over the next eighteen months to two years.

One of Russia’s main competitive advantages is its huge domestic market, and it should be filled with more Russian-made products, Putin said.

The President said that Russia’s decision to join the WTO in 2012 was a difficult transition for the country, but that it raised economic standards.

At the meeting President Putin laid out a list of economic priorities for the Russian state. At the top are developing the infrastructure, boosting lending, continuing to develop the agricultural and technology sectors, and increasing overall competition.

Russia joined the WTO in 2012 after nearly two decades of back and forth negotiations on the conditions for entry.

Fonte: Russia Today

Putin acusa a Occidente de violar las reglas de la OMC al sancionar a Rusia

El presidente ruso, Vladímir Putin, acusó hoy a Occidente de ignorar las reglas de la Organización Mundial de Comercio (OMC) al imponer sanciones económicas a Rusia por su papel en la crisis ucraniana.

“La imposición de sanciones contra Rusia no es otra cosa que la renuncia a los principios fundamentales de la OMC. Se viola el principio de acceso en igualdad de condiciones de todos los países al mercado de productos y servicios”, dijo Putin, citado por las agencias locales.

En una reunión en el Kremlin para analizar la situación económica nacional, Putin aseguró que los países occidentales “ignoran el principio de justicia y libre competencia”.

“De hecho, un grupo de países se permitió tachar de manera unilateral estos y otros principios y reglas de la OMC en el caso de Rusia, una de las seis mayores economías del mundo”, subrayó.

El jefe del Kremlin añadió que las medidas de respuesta adoptadas por Rusia, como la prohibición de la importación de alimentos, frutas y verduras por espacio de un año, “no responden a un deseo de castigar a los socios o influir de alguna forma en sus decisión”.

“Nada de eso. Antes que nada, nosotros pensamos en nuestros intereses y objetivos de desarrollo, en la defensa de nuestros productores y mercados de la competencia hostil”, señaló.

“Hay cosas que para nuestros socios son, por lo visto, más importantes que el buen estado de la economía mundial”, agregó.

Putin recordó que “el ingreso en la OMC” demostró que Rusia “construye una economía abierta” y que “está dispuesta a la más estrecha de las cooperaciones con los socios extranjeros”.

“Evidentemente, con el ingreso en la OMC Rusia elevó drásticamente el listón de exigencia en el ámbito de la competencia nacional: nos comprometimos a bajar las tarifas y a limitar el apoyo a los sectores clave de nuestra economía”, señaló.

No obstante, agregó, “en los últimos meses la situación ha cambiado” debido a las sanciones introducidas por Estados Unidos y la Unión Europea.

Recientemente, Putin advirtió de que las sanciones económicas perjudican a sus autores, mientras que las pérdidas para Moscú “son mínimas”.

“Conocemos las cifras de pérdidas que sufren las empresas europeas y estadounidenses como consecuencia de las medidas rusas de respuesta. Pero, como nos gusta decir en estos casos, esta no fue nuestra elección”, dijo.

Y encargó el Gobierno que estudie la posibilidad de introducir nuevas medidas de respuesta tras el nuevo paquete de sanciones impuestas por la UE y EEUU, pero siempre que no perjudiquen a la economía nacional.

Fonte: Russia Beyond the Headlines

PEPE ESCOBAR: “O QUEBRA-CABEÇAS DAS SANÇÕES EUA-UE-RÚSSIA”

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17/9/2014, [*] Pepe EscobarRT, Moscou

The US-EU-Russia sanctions puzzle

Traduzido pelo pessoal da Vila Vudu

Façam os russos o que fizerem, ninguém nem pensa: a solução é aplicar sanções, sanções e mais sanções. Agora, lá nos vamos outra vez… O mais recente pacote de sanções, do Tesouro dos EUA & União Europeia, ataca bancos, a indústria de energia e a indústria de defesa russos.

As atuais sanções são mesquinhas. São imundas. Não há eufemismo que mascare o que são as sanções contra a Rússia; são, de fato, uma declaração de guerra econômica.

O Sberbank, maior banco russo não terá acesso a capitais ocidentais para financiamentos de longo prazo, inclusive a qualquer tipo de empréstimo com prazo superior a 30 dias. E as atuais sanções contra empréstimos de 90 dias que afetam seis outros grandes bancos russos – de um pacote anterior de sanções – passam a aplicar-se também a partir de 30 dias.

No front da energia, o que EUA-UE querem é pôr fim aos novos projetos russos de exploração na Sibéria e no Ártico, impedindo as empresas do Grande Petróleo ocidentais de vender equipamento e tecnologia para projetos de exploração de gás de xisto no oceano, em águas profundas.

Significa que Exxon e Shell, por exemplo, estão com suas operações congeladas em cinco projetos com empresas gigantes de petróleo/gás/gasodutos russas: Gazprom, Gazprom Neft, Lukoil, Surgutneftegaz e Rosneft.

Ninguém jamais perdeu dinheiro apostando na imbecilidade dos “altos funcionários dos EUA” de sempre – que hoje se dedicam a “comentar” o mais recente pacote de sanções, como “instrumento” para “forçar Moscou a respeitar a lei internacional e a soberania do estado”. Qualquer passar de olhos, rápido que seja, sobre os registros históricos relacionados ao tal “instrumento” já provoca convulsões de gargalhadas.

E há também o subsecretário para Terrorismo e Inteligência Financeira do Tesouro dos EUA, David Cohen, que só faz insistir que o pacote “isola” ainda mais a Rússia do sistema financeiro global.

Membros do Parlamento Europeu aplaudem de pé, durante votação do acordo entre Ucrânia e União Europeia, no Parlamento Europeu, em Estrasburgo, dia 16/9/2014
(foto: Vincent Kessler)

O pacote também foi descrito pela imprensa-empresa ocidental como capaz de “irritar ainda mais os mercados financeiros, já super sensíveis”. Ora! Nenhum mercado deu qualquer sinal de “irritação”. Na Rússia, as ações das empresas sancionadas subiram de valor. Nos EUA, as ações das empresas de energia despencaram. Tradução taquigráfica: os mercados “irritados” e “super sensíveis” interpretaram o novo pacote de sanções como mais um gol-contra, de Washington e Bruxelas.

A Eurásia distancia-se

Quanto a “isolar” a Rússia, as empresas estão impedidas de se aproximar, na novilíngua de Washington-Wall Street, “de importantes fontes de financiamento denominadas em dólar”. Dito eufemisticamente, não podem nem chegar perto de “capital ocidental” – e quem fala de capital ocidental fala de dólar e euro. Quem acompanha os grandes movimentos que se vão sobrepondo em direção a um mundo multipolar, já sabe que a Rússia já não precisa de dólares norte-americanos e de euros.

Moscou pode usar essas moedas para comprar-trocar por bens e serviços nos EUA e na União Europeia. Mas, mesmo esses bens e serviços, podem ser comprados em outros pontos do mundo. Para tanto, você não precisa de “capital ocidental” – com Moscou fazendo avançar rapidamente o uso das respectivas moedas nacionais com outros parceiros comerciais. A gangue atlanticista assume que Moscou precisaria de bens e serviços dos EUA e UE, muito mais do que EUA e UE precisariam de bens e serviços da Rússia. Não passa de falácia.

A Rússia pode vender seus abundantes recursos de energia em qualquer moeda exceto dólares norte-americanos e euros. A Rússia pode comprar da Ásia e da América do Sul todas as roupas de que precisa. No front eletrônico e de alta tecnologia, praticamente tudo já é fabricado, mesmo, na China.

Crucialmente, será muito excitante assistir à União Europeia – que ainda não tem política comum de energia para todo o bloco – forçada a negociar com fornecedores alternativos. Azerbaijão, Turcomenistão e Qatar, por grande número de razões complexas – que vão de gás em quantidade insuficiente para vender, à ausência de gasodutos – não entram nessa dança.

O governo Obama, por sua vez, simplesmente não permitirá que a União Europeia ponha-se a importar energia do Irã a partir de, pode-se dizer, amanhã cedo. Mesmo que o acordo nuclear hoje cambaleante venha a ser assinado antes do final de 2014 – e presumivelmente abra o caminho para o fim das sanções contra o Irã.

Os mercados ditos “irracionais” nada têm de irracionais: os mercados estão vendo o que realmente está acontecendo. Mercados são movidos pela busca de lucro máximo, derivado darealpolitik.

Entrementes, Moscou ainda nem contragolpeou. E pode ser contragolpe letal – que vise exportadores para a Rússia e mesmo consumidores de energia russa. Na sequência, a União Europeia retaliará. E a Rússia contrarretaliará. É exatamente o que Washington quer: guerra econômica/comercial que devaste e rache a Eurásia.

Sobre aqueles US$ 20 trilhões…

No front político, Ucrânia e União Europeia já concordaram, inicialmente, em “adiar o Acordo de Associação com a União Europeia para o final de 2016”.

O tal acordo é absolutamente irrealizável; fizeram, agora, o mesmo que Yanukovich havia feito em novembro passado, porque sabia que Kiev não podia perder praticamente todo o comércio que a liga a Ucrânia à Rússia, em “troca” de um muito vago “livre comércio” com a União Europeia. O acordo para “adiar” o acordo foi, de fato, supervisionado por aquela indescritível insuperável mediocridade que atende pelo nome de José Manuel Barroso, presidente em final de mandato da Comissão Europeia.

Mas foi quando o Parlamento Europeu, em sessão plenária em Estrasburgo, correu a ratificar o Acordo de Associação da Ucrânia, no mesmo momento em que o presidente Petro Poroshenko submetia o documento ao Parlamento ucraniano. Não significa que o Acordo passa(ria) a ser imediatamente vigente. A “integração” econômica com a União Europeia – fórmula eufemística para a invasão de mão-única, da Ucrânia, por produtos da União Europeia – só começará em janeiro de 2016. E não há como uma União Europeia detonada pela crise vir a incorporar a Ucrânia, antes daquela data, ou jamais, seja quando for.

Na 5ª-feira (18/9/2014), Poroshenko reúne-se com patrão dele, o presidente Barack Obama dos EUA, e falará em sessão conjunta do Congresso dos EUA. Preparem-se para um choque de retórica contra o “império do mal” de dimensões intergalácticas.

Mas será no sábado, em Berlim que a coisa real começa a desdobrar-se: negociações de energia entre Rússia, União Europeia e Ucrânia. Desnecessário repetir: Moscou tem todas as cartas decisivas.

A dívida-monstro de Washington já está chegando aos US$ 20 trilhões – e não para de aumentar. Com crise-monstro se aproximando como tsunami vindo do inferno, não surpreende que Washington tenha tido de recorrer à tática diversionista perfeita: o retorno do “império do mal”. É a escola Marvel Comics de política, tuuuuuuuuuuuudo outra vez.

A Rússia tem enorme reserva de capital estrangeiro – e pode atravessar a tempestade. A Alemanha – principal economia da União Europeia – por sua vez, já começou a sofrer. O crescimento ali já é negativo (-0,2%). O vento histérico das sanções está soprando precisamente nessa direção – desencaminhando ainda mais as economias europeias. E ninguém tem qualquer esperança de que a UE tenha colhões para enfrentar Washington. Não naquela Bruxelas infestada de vassalos.

_________________________________

[*] Pepe Escobar (1954) é jornalista, brasileiro, vive em São Paulo, Hong Kong e Paris, mas publica exclusivamente em inglês. Mantém coluna (The Roving Eye) no Asia Times Online; é também analista de política de blogs e sites como: Tom Dispatch, Information Clearing HouseRed Voltaire e outros; é correspondente/ articulista das redes Russia TodayThe Real News Network Televison e Al-Jazeera. Seus artigos podem ser lidos, traduzidos para o português pelo Coletivo de Tradutores da Vila Vudu e João Aroldo, no blog redecastorphoto.

Livros:

− Globalistan: How the Globalized World is Dissolving into Liquid War,  Nimble Books, 2007.

− Red Zone Blues: A Snapshot of Baghdad During the Surge,  Nimble Books, 2007.

− Obama Does Globalistan,  Nimble Books, 2009.

Fonte: Rede Castor Photo

Pepe Eecobar: Obama’s ‘stupid stuff’ legacy

obama putin
By Pepe Escobar

But whether people see what’s happening in Ukraine, and Russia’s aggression towards its neighbors in the manner in which it’s financing and arming separatists; to what’s happened in Syria – the devastation that [President Bashar al-]Assad has wrought on his own people; to the failure in Iraq for Sunni and Shia and Kurd to compromise – although we’re trying to see if we can put together a government that actually can function; to ongoing terrorist threats; to what’s happening in Israel and Gaza – part of peoples’ concern is just the sense that around the world the old order isn’t holding and we’re not quite yet to where we need to be in terms of a new order that’s based on a set of different principles, that’s based on a sense of common humanity, that’s based on economies that work for all people.President Barack Obama

Looks like US President Barack Obama made a royal mess of what his mentor Dr Zbigniew “Grand Chessboard” Brzezinski taught him. 

Dr Zbig always quotes Sir Halford John Mackinder’s three grand imperatives of imperial geostrategy; to prevent collusion and maintain security dependence among the vassals; to keep tributaries pliant and protected; and to keep the barbarians from coming together.

After dabbling briefly with “leading from behind” – a non-starter – Obama finally went Mackinderesque with his stellar “Don’t Do Stupid Stuff” foreign policy doctrine.

Nevertheless, an always alert former secretary of state Hillary Clinton said “Don’t do Stupid Stuff” isn’t a “foreign policy organizing principle”. Yet “Stupid Stuff” is all that the Obama foreign policy team knows how to do.

Starting with Obama treating Russia under President Vladimir Putin the way Hillary’s husband treated Russia under vodka container Boris Yeltsin. Then came the decision – without any public debate – to start bombing Iraq all over again. And soon Syria. Bombs Away in Syraq!

So “protect” Yazidis, yes. Protect Gazans, no. “Protect” Kiev’s bunch of neo-Nazis, fascists and shady oligarchs, yes. Protect Russophones in Eastern Ukraine, no.

It all started with protecting Irbil – already protected by Sumerian goddess Ishtar for millennia. Then protecting Irbil and Baghdad. Then protecting all “strategic” sites in Iraq.

Retired General Carter Ham of AFRICOM/”We came, we saw, he died” fame, was adamant that it will be “very difficult” to pull off so much protecting with only a few fighter jets. So drones will be needed. And troops on the ground.

From protecting ExxonMobil and Chevron to double bombing in Syraq. No wonder the Return of the Living (Neo-Con) Dead are so excited. It’s the Greater Middle East all over again. And guess who will be part of the coalition of the willing to fight the Caliph? Britain, Australia, Turkey, Jordan and Gulf Cooperation Council stalwarts Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

Almost the same bunch (five among seven) that enabled the rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in the first place, from “Assad must go” to “good” and “bad” jihadis, and finally to ISIS (now the Islamic State) configured as the sprawling abode – complete with flush private army – of Caliph Ibrahim.

And no, there’s no strategy. Hee haw!

Bye bye petrodollar
Now let’s see the dividends of “Don’t Do Stupid Stuff” as applied to Ukraine.

Back to the Mackinderesque Dr Zbig. Some vassals – the usual NATO/GCC suspects, but not all of them – may still believe they profit from “security dependence”, while others remain nervously pliant and, in theory, feel “protected” by the Empire of Chaos.

But then the Empire of Chaos “encouraged” a de facto coup. And gave the green light for the new Kiev mob to do in Eastern Ukraine roughly what Israel does in Gaza. The idea in Ukraine was to bog down Russia in its western borderlands and cut off the economic/trade link between Russia and Germany. Cut Eurasia in half.

But then Obama launched a Cold War 2.0 that could easily turn hot. He destroyed the relationship with chancellor Angela Merkel and Germany and amplified the strategic embrace between the Bear and the Dragon, with the result that Beijing started paying less attention to the “pivoting to Asia” because now it enjoys even more backing from Moscow. Meanwhile, Moscow further stalls Washington’s advances in Central Asia.

Sanctions on Russia not only reinforce its internal market but also boost its foreign trade – way beyond European shores. Yet still it was not enough to totally sell out to Wall Street and totally wreck US foreign policy. With aides/advisors like National Security Advisor Susan Rice, Deputy National Security Advisor Benjamin Rhodes, US Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power, and Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland, who needs enemies?

Obama’s sanctions hysteria is leading the way to the progressive end of the US dollar as reserve currency, and the end of the petrodollar.

Witness this – the most important news of these last few months after the Russia-China “gas deal of the century”.

Obama is accelerating the now uncontrolled collapse of the Empire of Chaos. The new axis of the future – Beijing, Moscow, Berlin – is slowly but surely coming together. There’s nothing “barbarian” about them. And the bulk of the Global South supports them.

“The old order isn’t holding” – indeed. “The Caliph is evil. So I’m applying more sanctions on Russia.” How’s that for Empire management? Good boy. Now pivot. With yourself. And with no strategy.

Pepe Escobar is the author of Globalistan: How the Globalized World is Dissolving into Liquid War (Nimble Books, 2007), Red Zone Blues: a snapshot of Baghdad during the surge (Nimble Books, 2007), and Obama does Globalistan (Nimble Books, 2009). He may be reached at pepeasia@yahoo.com.

(Copyright 2014 Asia Times Online (Holdings) Ltd. All rights reserved. Please contact us about sales, syndication and republishing.)

Fonte: Asia Times

 

Pepe Escobar: From Minsk to Wales, Germany is the key

From Minsk to Wales, Germany is the key

Published time: August 28, 2014 09:27
 
Ukraine's President Petro Poroshenko (L), Russia's President Vladimir Putin (top centre R) and Belarus' President Alexander Lukashenko (3rd R from Putin) meet with high-ranking officials and presidents from Kazakhstan and the European Union in Minsk, August 26, 2014.(Reuters / Alexei Druzhinin)

Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko (L), Russia’s President Vladimir Putin (top centre R) and Belarus’ President Alexander Lukashenko (3rd R from Putin) meet with high-ranking officials and presidents from Kazakhstan and the European Union in Minsk, August 26, 2014.(Reuters / Alexei Druzhinin)

 
The road to the Minsk summit this past Tuesday began to be paved when German Chancellor Angela Merkel talked to ARD public TV after her brief visit to Kiev on Saturday.

Merkel emphasized, “A solution must be found to the Ukraine crisis that does not hurt Russia.”

She added that “There must be dialogue. There can only be a political solution. There won’t be a military solution to this conflict.”

Merkel talked about “decentralization” of Ukraine, a definitive deal on gas prices, Ukraine-Russia trade, and even hinted Ukraine is free to join the Russia-promoted Eurasian Union (the EU would never make a “huge conflict” out of it). Exit sanctions; enter sound proposals.

She could not have been more explicit; “We [Germany] want to have good trade relations with Russia as well. We want reasonable relations with Russia. We are depending on one another and there are so many other conflicts in the world where we should work together, so I hope we can make progress”.

The short translation for all this is there won’t be a Nulandistan (after neo-con Victoria ‘F**k the EU’Nuland), remote-controlled by Washington, and fully financed by the EU. In the real world, what Germany says, the EU follows.

Geopolitically, this also means a huge setback for Washington’s obsessive containment and encirclement of Russia, proceeding in parallel to the ‘pivot to Asia’ (containment and encirclement of China).

It’s the economy, stupid

Ukraine’s economy – now under disaster capitalism intervention – is… well, a disaster. It’s way beyond recession, now in deep depression. Any forthcoming IMF funds serve to pay outstanding bills and feed the (losing) creaking military machine; Kiev is fighting no less than Ukraine’s industrial heartland. Not to mention that the conditions attached to the IMF’s ‘structural adjustment’ are bleeding Ukrainians dry.

Taxes – and budget cuts – are up. The currency, the hryvnya, has plunged 40 percent since early 2014. The banking system is a joke. The notion that the EU will pay Ukraine’s humongous bills is a myth. Germany (which runs the EU) wants a deal. Fast.

The reason is very simple. Germany is growing only 1.5 percent in 2014. Why? Because the Washington-propelled sanction hysteria is hurting German business. Merkel finally got the message. Or at least seems to have.

The first stage towards a lasting deal is energy. This Friday, there’s a key meeting between Russian and EU energy officials in Moscow. And then, later next week, it will be Russian, EU and Ukrainian officials. The EU’s energy commissioner, Gunther Oettinger, who was in Minsk, wants an interim deal to make sure Russian gas flows through Ukraine to Europe in winter. General Winter, once again, wins any war.

(L-R) Kazakhstan's President Nursultan Nazarbayev, Russia's President Vladimir Putin, Belarus' President Alexander Lukashenko, Ukraine's President Petro Poroshenko, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Catherine Ashton, European Commissioner for Energy Guenther Oettinger, European Commissioner for Trade Karel De Gucht pose on the sideline of a summit in Belarus' capital of Minsk on August 26, 2014. (AFP Photo / Kirill Kudryavtsev)

(L-R) Kazakhstan’s President Nursultan Nazarbayev, Russia’s President Vladimir Putin, Belarus’ President Alexander Lukashenko, Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Catherine Ashton, European Commissioner for Energy Guenther Oettinger, European Commissioner for Trade Karel De Gucht pose on the sideline of a summit in Belarus’ capital of Minsk on August 26, 2014. (AFP Photo / Kirill Kudryavtsev)

Here, essentially, we have the EU – not Russia – telling Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko to stuff his (losing) ‘strategy’ of slow-motion ethnic cleansing of eastern Ukraine.

Moscow has always insisted the Ukraine crisis is a political problem that needs a political solution. Moscow would accept a decentralization solution considering the interests – and language rights – of people in Donetsk, Lugansk, Odessa, Kharkov. Moscow does not encourage secession.

Poroshenko, on the other hand, is your typical Ukrainian oligarch in a dance of oligarchs. Now that he’s on top, he does not want to become road kill. He might, if he relies on ‘support’ by the neo-Nazis of Right Sector and Svoboda, because then there will never be a political solution.

The Empire of Chaos, needless to say, does not want a political solution – with a neutral Ukraine economically tied to both the EU and Russia; economic/trade integration across Eurasia is anathema.

It’s all about NATO

In parallel, every EU diplomat with a conscience – well, they do exist – knows that the non-stop hysteria about the Russian‘threat’ to Eastern Europe is a Washington-peddled myth designed to boost NATO. Secretary-General Anders ‘Fogh of War’ Rasmussen sounds like a scratched CD.

It’s hardly a secret in Brussels that larger EU powers simply don’t want permanent NATO bases in Eastern Europe. France, Italy and Spain are forcefully against it. Germany is still sitting on the wall, carefully weighing how not to antagonize both Russia and the US. Needless to say, the Anglo-American “special relationship” badly wants the bases, supported by the hysteria unleashed by Poland and the Baltic states – Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.

So Fogh of War is on a predictable roll, talking “rapid reinforcements”, “reception facilities”, “pre-positioning of supplies, of equipment, preparation of infrastructure, bases, and headquarters” and “a more visible NATO presence.” This graphically proves, once again, that the Empire of Chaos couldn’t give a damn about Ukraine; it’s all about NATO expansion – the key talking point next week at the Wales summit.

The no-holds-barred neoliberal asset-stripping, wild privatization and outright looting of Ukraine, disguised as loans and ‘aid’, is now unstoppable. Yet gobbling up Ukraine’s agriculture and energy potential is not enough for the Empire of Chaos. It wants Crimea back (that future NATO base in Sevastopol…). It wants missile defense deployed in Poland and the Baltics. It would even love regime change in Russia.

And then there’s MH17. If sooner rather than later is proved the Empire of Chaos fooled Europe into counterproductive sanctions based on the flimsiest ‘evidence’, German public opinion will force Merkel to act accordingly.

Germany was the secret behind the Minsk summit. Let’s see if Germany will also be the secret behind the Wales summit. In the end it’s up to Germany to prevent Cold War 2.0 getting hotter by the day all across Europe.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.

Pepe Escobar is the roving correspondent for Asia Times/Hong Kong, an analyst for RT and TomDispatch, and a frequent contributor to websites and radio shows ranging from the US to East Asia.

Fonte: Russia Today

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