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The Eurasian chessboard is in non-stop motion at dizzying speed. After the Afghanistan shock, we’re all aware of the progressive interconnection of the Belt and Road Initiative, the Eurasia Economic Union (EAEU) and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), and of the preeminent roles played by Russia, China and Iran. These are the pillars of the... Read More
The annual Valdai Club meeting has always been positioned as absolutely essential when it comes to understanding the non-stop movement of geopolitical tectonic plates across Eurasia. The ongoing 18th meeting in Sochi, Russia once again lived up to expectations. The overall theme was Global Shake-Up in the 21st Century: The Individual, Values, and the State.... Read More
Forget about the incessant drumming of Cold War 2.0 against China. Forget about think-tank simpletons projecting their wishful thinking on the perpetual “end of China’s rise.” Forget even about a few sound minds in Brussels – yes, they do exist – saying Europe does not want containment of China; it wants engagement, which means business.... Read More
The last thing the complex, work-in-progress drive towards Eurasian integration needs at this stage is this messy affair between Iran and Azerbaijan in the South Caucasus. Let’s start with the Conquerors of Khaybar – the largest Iranian military exercise in two decades held on its northwestern border with Azerbaijan. Among the deployed Iranian military and... Read More
Pax Americana was always a minor character in a zombie apocalypse flick. Pax Americana is actually The Eternal Return of the Living Dead. “Pax” was never in order; War Inc. rules. The end of WWII led directly to the Cold War. The unipolar moment was an arc from the First Gulf War to the bombing... Read More
The 20th anniversary summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in Dushanbe, Tajikistan, enshrined no less than a new geopolitical paradigm. Iran, now a full SCO member, was restored to its traditionally prominent Eurasian role, following the recent $400 billion-worth trade and development deal struck with China. Afghanistan was the main topic – with all... Read More
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As a rudderless West watched on, the 20th anniversary meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization was laser-focused...
The two defining moments of the historic 20th anniversary Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summit in Dushanbe, Tajikistan had to come from the keynote speeches of – who else – the leaders of the Russia-China strategic partnership. Xi Jinping: “Today we will launch procedures to admit Iran as a full member of the SCO.” Vladimir Putin:... Read More
The West has been literally swamped by a non-stop propaganda offensive about Uyghur forced labor camps – thoroughly debunked, for instance, here. Now let’s examine the other – Western - side of the story. In early 2021, Defense for Children (DCI) took the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI) to court in New South Wales. DCI’s... Read More
The Taliban delegation with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi in Tianjin on July 28th
The first Taliban press conference after this weekend’s Saigon moment geopolitical earthquake, conducted by spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid, was in itself a game-changer. The contrast could not be starker with those rambling pressers at the Taliban embassy in Islamabad after 9/11 and before the start of the American bombing – proving this is an entirely new... Read More
The ever-elusive Afghan “peace” process negotiations re-start this Wednesday in Doha via the extended troika – the US, Russia, China and Pakistan. The contrast with the accumulated facts on the ground could not be starker. In a coordinated blitzkrieg, the Taliban have subdued no less than six Afghan provincial capitals in only four days. The... Read More
Seyyed Ebrahim Raisi was sworn in as the 8th president of Iran this Thursday at the Majlis (Parliament), two days after being formally endorsed by Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Khamenei. Representatives of the UN secretary-general; OPEC; the EU; the Eurasia Economic Union (EAEU); the Inter-Islamic Union; and quite a few heads of state... Read More
You don’t argue with the Tatmadaw – the Myanmar Armed Forces. It’s always their way, or the highway. Since the mid-20th century, the Chinese have come to understand it quite well. How Beijing approaches the Myanmar maze is conditioned by four variables: natural gas; water; the drug trade; and the fractious clashes between the Tatmadaw... Read More
China and Russia will be key to solving an ancient geopolitical riddle: how to pacify the 'graveyard of empires'
So this is the way the Forever War in Afghanistan ends – if one could call it an ending. Rather, it’s an American repositioning. Regardless, after two decades of death and destruction and untold trillions of dollars, we’re faced not with a bang – and not with a whimper, either – but rather with a... Read More
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Assaulted by cognitive dissonance across the spectrum, the Empire of Chaos now behaves as a manic depressive inmate, rotten to the core - a fate more filled with dread than having to face a revolt of the satrapies. Only brain dead zombies now believe in its self-billed universal mission as the new Rome and the... Read More
Over a week ago the excruciatingly slow Doha peace talks between the Kabul government and the Taliban resumed, and then they dragged on for two days observed by envoys from the EU, US and UN. Nothing happened. They could not even agree on a ceasefire during Eid al-Adha. Worse, there’s no road map for how... Read More
The Shanghai Cooperation Organization meeting of Foreign Ministers on Wednesday in Dushanbe, the Tajik capital, may have been an under-the-radar affair, but it did reveal the contours of the big picture ahead when it comes to Afghanistan. So let’s see what Russia and China – the SCO’s heavyweights – have been up to. Chinese Foreign... Read More
The Great Game: This lithograph by British Lieutenant James Rattray shows Shah Shuja in 1839 after his enthronement as Emir of Afghanistan in the Bala Hissar (fort) of Kabul. Rattray wrote: \
Russia-China-Iran alliance is taking Afghanistan's bull by the horns
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi is on a Central Asian loop all through the week. He’s visiting Turkmenistan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan. The last two are full members of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, founded 20 years ago. The SCO heavyweights are of course China and Russia. They are joined by four Central Asian “stans” (all but... Read More
Deploying diplomatic skills refined from Doha to Moscow, the Taliban in 2021 has little to do with its 2001 incarnation
A very important meeting took place in Moscow last week, virtually hush-hush. Nikolai Patrushev, secretary of the Russian Security Council, received Hamdullah Mohib, Afghanistan’s national security adviser. There were no substantial leaks. A bland statement pointed to the obvious: They “focused on the security situation in Afghanistan during the pullout of Western military contingencies and... Read More
The US is on the verge of its own second Vietnam repeated as farce in a haphazard retreat from Afghanistan
Let’s start with some stunning facts on the Afghan ground. The Taliban are on a roll. Earlier this week their PR arm was claiming they hold 218 Afghan districts out of 421 – capturing new ones every day. Tens of districts are contested. Entire Afghan provinces are basically lost to the government in Kabul, which... Read More
The West’s ‘rules-based order’ invokes rulers’ authority; Russia-China say it’s time to return to law-based order
We do live in extraordinary times. On the day of the 100th anniversary of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), President Xi Jinping, in Tiananmen square, amid all the pomp and circumstance, delivered a stark geopolitical message: I have offered a concise version of the modern Chinese miracle – which has nothing to do with divine... Read More
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The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) centennial takes place this week at the heart of an incandescent geopolitical equation. China, the emerging superpower, is back to the global prominence it enjoyed throughout centuries of recorded history, while the declining Hegemon is paralyzed by the “existential challenge” posed to its fleeting, unilateral dominance. A mindset of full... Read More
Iran's president-elect will 'Look East' while seeking to exit 'strategic patience' when dealing with the US
In his first press conference as President-Elect with 62% of the votes, Ebrahim Raesi, facing a forest of microphones, came out swinging and leaving nothing to the imagination. On the JCPOA, or Iran nuclear deal, the dossier that completely obsesses the West, Raeisi was clear: the US must immediately return to the JCPOA that Washington... Read More
For those spared the ordeal of sifting through the NATO summit communique, here’s the concise low down: Russia is an "acute threat" and China is a "systemic challenge". NATO, of course, are just a bunch of innocent kids building castles in a sandbox. Those were the days when Lord Hastings Lionel Ismay, NATO's first secretary-general,... Read More
It requires major suspension of disbelief to consider the G7, the self-described democracy’s most exclusive club, as relevant to the Raging Twenties. Real life dictates that even accounting for the inbuilt structural inequality of the current world system the G7’s economic output barely registers as 30% of the global total. Cornwall was at best an... Read More
As Sino-Russo-Iranophobia dissolves in sanctions and hysteria, mapmakers carve the post-unilateral order
It’s the Nikolai Patrushev-Yang Jiechi show – all over again. These are the two players running an up and coming geopolitical entente, on behalf of their bosses Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping. Last week, Yang Jiechi – the director of the Office of the Foreign Affairs Commission of the Chinese Communist Party's Central Committee –... Read More
Andrei Martyanov is in a class by himself. A third wave baby boomer, born in the early 1960s in Baku, in the Caucasus, then part of the former USSR, he’s arguably the foremost military analyst in the Russian sphere, living and working in the US, writing in English for a global audience, and always excelling... Read More
Henry Kissinger, 97, Henry the K. for those he keeps close, is either a Delphic oracle-style strategic thinker or a certified war criminal for those kept not so close. He now seems to have been taking time off his usual Divide and Rule stock in trade – advising the combo behind POTUS, a.k.a. Crash Test... Read More
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One cannot but feel mildly amused at the theatrical spectacle of the US troop pullout from Afghanistan, its completion day now postponed for maximum PR impact to 9/11, 2021. Nearly two decades and a staggering US$2 trillion after this Forever War was launched by a now immensely indebted empire, the debacle can certainly be interpreted... Read More
In times of grave geopolitical trouble it’s up for a true statesman to step up in the global podium and defuse a noxious Cold War 2.0 atmosphere. President Xi Jinping did deliver with his keynote speech at the annual Boao Forum in Hainan. Here’s the full speech. And let’s start with a single sentence: The... Read More
The extraordinary confluence between the signing of the Iran-China strategic partnership deal and the Ever Given saga in the Suez Canal is bound to spawn a renewed drive to the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and all interconnected corridors of Eurasia integration. This is the most important geoeconomic development in Southwest Asia in ages –... Read More
Capping an extraordinary two weeks that turned 21st century geopolitics upside down, Iran and China finally signed their 25-year strategic deal this past Saturday in Tehran. The timing could not have been more spectacular, following what we examined in three previous columns: the virtual Quad and the 2+2 US-China summit in Alaska; the Lavrov-Wang Yi... Read More
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Let’s start with comic relief: the “leader of the free world” has pledged to prevent China from becoming the “leading” nation on the planet. And to fulfill such an exceptional mission, his “expectation” is to run again for president in 2024. Not as a hologram. And fielding the same running mate. Now that the “free... Read More
TRANSCRIPT Ibrahima: [00:00:00] Good morning or good evening, depending on where you are located and welcome to the Henry George School. My name is Ibrahima Drame and I'm the director of education. It's a great honor to have you with us today for another joint webinar co-organized with the International Union for Land Value Taxation... Read More
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov (L) meets Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi (R) in Beijing, China on March 23, 2021. Russian Foreign Ministry / Handout / Anadolu Agency
It took 18 years after Shock and Awe unleashed on Iraq for the Hegemon to be mercilessly shocked and awed by a virtually simultaneous, diplomatic Russia-China one-two. How this is a real game-changing moment cannot be emphasized enough; 21st century geopolitics will never be the same again. Yet it was the Hegemon who first crossed... Read More
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi is set to exchange views with his US counterpart in Alaska. Image: Facebook
Wang Yi and Yang Jiechi will seek to make shark's fin soup out of Antony Blinken and Jake Sullivan at the Anchorage summit
Leviathan seems to be positioning itself for a geopolitical Kill Bill rampage – yet brandishing a rusty samurai high-carbon-steel sword. Predictably, US deep state masters have not factored in that they could eventually be neutralized by a geopolitical Five Point Palm Exploding Heart Technique. In a searing, concise essay, Alastair Crooke pointed to the heart... Read More
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Moscow is painfully aware that the US/NATO “strategy” of containment of Russia is already reaching fever pitch. Again. This past Wednesday, at a very important meeting with the FSB board, President Putin laid it all out in stark terms: Not without a touch of wickedness, Putin added this was no exaggeration: "In fact, you don’t... Read More
The late Dr. Zbig “Grand Chessboard” Brzezinski for some time dispensed wisdom as an oracle of US foreign policy, side by side with the perennial Henry Kissinger – who, in vast swathes of the Global South, is regarded as nothing but a war criminal. Brzezinski never achieved the same notoriety. At best he claimed bragging... Read More
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A more sovereign Germany closer to Russia and China may be the straw that breaks the US hegemon’s back
Last week we traced the necessary historical and geopolitical steps to understand Why Russia is driving the West crazy. And then, last Friday, right before the start of the Year of the Metal Ox, came the bombshell, delivered with customary aplomb by Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. In an interview with popular talk show host... Read More
Have an auspicious Year of the Ox, everybody. And to celebrate it in style, fleetingly alleviating our burden in these times of trouble, let’s plunge into a dream within a dream, going back to the future for a game-changing moment in Chinese history. Chinese New Year’s Day, 1272. At the time, that fell on January... Read More
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Future historians may register it as the day when usually unflappable Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov decided he had had enough: Josep Borrell, the EU foreign policy chief, on an official visit to Moscow, had to take it on the chin. Lavrov, always the perfect gentleman, added, “I hope that the strategic review that will... Read More
It will be fascinating to watch how the (Dis)United States will deal with post-coup Myanmar as part of their 24/7 “containment of China” frenzy. The (jade) elephant in the elaborate room housing the military coup in Myanmar had to be – what else – China. And the Tatmadaw – the Myanmar Armed Forces – knows... Read More
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So the Davos Agenda has come and gone. That was the virtual Great Reset preview, hosted by Kissinger acolyte cum World Economic Forum (WEF) oracle Herr Klaus Schwab. Still, corporate/political so-called “leaders” will continue to wax lyrical about the Fourth Industrial Revolution – or its mild spin-offs such as Build Back Better, the favorite slogan... Read More
Xi shows the contrast between Asia's relative serenity and the chaos engulfing the West’s top power centers
The virtual Davos Agenda is finally on, from Monday to Friday this week, promoted by the World Economic Forum (WEF). No, this is not The Great Reset. At least not yet. The Agenda is the aperitivo towards the Great Reset apotheosis at the WEF’s Special Annual Meeting, which will take place this coming spring in... Read More
It was hardly a secret throughout the Trump administration. Now, dying embers within sight, and with minimum fanfare, comes the declassification - virtually the whole document, minus a few redactions – of the US Strategic Framework for the Indo-Pacific. Why now, no less than 30 years before the usual, standard US declassification/public record protocols apply?... Read More
A Conversation with Michael Hudson and Pepe Escobar
Alanna: So, let’s formally start. Once we start to record Ibrahim is going to introduce the Henry George school and welcome everybody then I’m going to introduce from the bios; Michael and Pepe and then Michael will start with rent and rent seeking those who have comments or questions could put that in chat and... Read More
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Seven years after being launched by President Xi Jinping, first in Astana and then in Jakarta, the New Silk Roads, or Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) increasingly drive the American plutocratic oligarchy completely nuts. The relentless paranoia about the Chinese “threat” has much to do with the exit ramp offered by Beijing to a Global... Read More
The political economy of the Digital Age remains virtually terra incognita. In Techno-Feudalism, published three months ago in France (no English translation yet), Cedric Durand, an economist at the Sorbonne, provides a crucial, global public service as he sifts through the new Matrix that controls all our lives. Durand places the Digital Age in the... Read More
Four geoeconomic summits compressed in one week tell the story of where we stand in these supremely dystopian times. The (virtual) signing of RCEP in Vietnam was followed by the equally virtual BRICS meeting hosted by Moscow, the APEC meeting hosted by Malaysia, and the G20 this past weekend hosted by Saudi Arabia. Cynics have... Read More
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Ho Chi Minh, in his eternal abode, will be savoring it with a heavenly smirk. Vietnam was the - virtual - host as the 10 Asean nations, plus China, Japan, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand, signed the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, or RCEP, on the final day of the 37th Asean Summit. RCEP, eight... Read More
Whatever the geopolitical and geoeconomic consequences of the spectacular US dystopia, the Russia-China strategic partnership, in their own slightly different registers, have already voted on their path forward. Here is how I framed what is at the heart of the Chinese 2021-2025 five-year plan approved at the plenum in Beijing last week. Here is a... Read More
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