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Russia Backs India’s Bid to Become Permanent Member of United Nations Security Council

Samizdat – 25.09.2022

Russia has come out in support of India’s bid to become one of the permanent members of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) – the all-powerful global body which is responsible for taking key decisions about maintaining peace and security in the world.

At present, it comprises the United States, France, Russia, China, and Great Britain.

During his speech at the UNGA, Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov called for wider representation of Asian, African, and Latin American countries in the Security Council, making particular mention of New Delhi and Brazil.

“We see an opportunity to make the Security Council more democratic by having representation from African, Asian and Latin American countries. India and Brazil, in particular, are major international players and should be included as permanent members of the council,” Lavrov said in his address to the 77th United Nations General Assembly.

Earlier, in a joint statement, India and 31 other nations urged the UN to expand both the permanent and non-permanent membership of the UNSC.
Besides, New Delhi said that reforms in the UN were necessary to make it more effective and representative.

At another meeting in which foreign ministers from India, Japan, Germany, and Brazil took part, reforms of the Security Council were discussed at length.

The four nations together are known as the G4 and after the meeting they released a joint statement, saying that “today’s conflicts around the globe and the interconnected global challenges have brought to the fore the urgency to carry out reforms in the Security Council as well as expand the membership of other decision-making groups so that they are more representative of the interests of the developing nations.”

At present, India is a non-permanent member of the UNSC.

New Delhi’s two-year term on the Council ends on 31 December this year.

September 25, 2022 Posted by | Aletho News | , , , | 2 Comments

Sanctions on Russia ‘irresponsible’, adviser to Brazil’s Lula says

Samizdat | August 6, 2022

Celso Amorim, Brazil’s former foreign minister and current foreign policy adviser to presidential frontrunner Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, has condemned the West’s sanctions on Russia and said that should Lula take office, Brazil would chart a different course.

In an interview with Bloomberg published on Friday, Amorim claimed that the West’s response to Russia’s military operation in Ukraine – sanctions on Russia and billions of dollars worth of weapons for Ukraine – have made nuclear war a real possibility.

“For the first time since the Cuban missile crisis we see articles about the risk of nuclear weapons published on a weekly basis,” he said, arguing that “it’s irresponsible not to seek peace.”

Amorim’s argument mirrors that of Lula himself. Back in May the former Brazilian leader told Time magazine that he sees Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky as equally responsible for the conflict in Ukraine, and condemned Washington for encouraging him to oppose Russia.

“The United States has a lot of political clout. And Biden could have avoided [the conflict], not incited it,” Lula argued at the time.

From the perspective of the US, Amorim questioned the logic of driving Russia into a deeper partnership with China, another economic and military rival of America.

“I have nothing against China,” he stated, adding that both are part of the BRICS group, but said that he “can’t understand the interest of the US in strengthening the China-Russia relationship.”

This relationship aside, Amorim told Bloomberg that an economy as large as Russia’s is “too big and strategic” to isolate, and that Lula’s administration would not pursue such policies if the two-term leftist president is elected in October. Speaking to Time in May, Lula said that “many different countries” are having to “foot the bill” for Washington’s hardline anti-Russia policies, and that if he is elected, “Brazil will again become a protagonist on the international stage and we will prove that it’s possible to have a better world.”

Lula is currently polling 11 points ahead of incumbent President Jair Bolsonaro, according to an aggregate compiled by the US-based Americas Society. Should he triumph in October, Amorim will likely be influential in setting his administration’s foreign policy, having served as Brazil’s foreign minister during Lula’s two terms in office from 2003 until 2010.

Bolsonaro has not followed the US’ lead on Ukraine either. Despite Brazil voting in the UN General Assembly to condemn Russia over the conflict, the president has refused to sanction Moscow and announced his intention to keep purchasing fertilizer from Russia and sign a new deal to import Russian diesel.

Like Lula, Bolsonaro also partly blamed Kiev for the conflict. Ukrainians, he said in February, had “trusted a comedian with the fate of a nation,” referring to Zelensky.

August 6, 2022 Posted by | Economics | , , , | 1 Comment

‘US-led effort to isolate Russia failed’

Samizdat – August 5, 2022

The US-led drive to isolate Russia through sanctions has not succeeded, as half the countries in the Group of Twenty leading global economies refused to sign on, Bloomberg reported on Friday.

According to the publication, senior officials from leading Western nations are surprised by the lack of support within the wider G20, despite their efforts to make the case for restrictions against Russia.

Argentina, Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, and Turkey have not joined the sanctions that were adopted by the US, UK, EU, and their allies Australia, Canada, Japan, and South Korea. Some nations, like China and South Africa, have openly criticized the restrictions. The G20 nations account for around 85% of global economic output.

According to Bloomberg, the reasons for the lack of support include strong trade ties, historical affinities to Moscow, and a distrust of former colonial powers.

August 5, 2022 Posted by | Economics | , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Brazilian mercenaries die in Ukraine

By Lucas Leiroz | July 6, 2022

Two Brazilians were killed in Ukraine in the first week of July after a Russian drone operation in Kharkiv. In all, three Brazilian mercenaries have died in Ukraine since the beginning of the Russian special military operation on February 24th. In the South American country, the mainstrem media has a strong pro-Western ideological orientation, which is why it encourages “volunteers” to go to Eastern Europe. In their speech, the media outlets claim that it is “easy” to fight against Russians because Kiev is supposedly “winning” the conflict. However, upon arriving in Ukraine, the foreign mercenaries are faced with a different and much harsher reality.

Between the night of July 1 and the morning of July 2 Brazilian mercenaries Douglas Rodrigues Búrigo and Thalita do Valle died after a Russian attack in Khakiv. Douglas was a former soldier of the Brazilian Army and had been fighting in Ukraine since May. Thalita was a model, lawyer, and professional sniper, who had previously worked as a military volunteer and propaganda agent for the Kurdish women’s battalions in the Middle East. Apparently, she died of asphyxiation while trying to flee her accommodation in the face of a drone attack, while Douglas was reportedly hit by shrapnel from mortar shells on the outside.

In June, another Brazilian had already died in Ukraine. André Hack Bahi was fatally shot during Russian bombing raids in Severodonetsk. Bahi was a former fighter in the French Legion and had already participated in some missions in Africa, but he was not able to survive the intense reality of the fighting in Ukraine. It is also necessary to mention that not all the dead have been properly identified yet, which leads one to believe that there may be more Brazilians among the dead in Ukraine, since there is ample participation of mercenaries from the South American country in the region.

There is still no official report by the authorities indicating the precise number of Brazilian citizens who are fighting for Kiev’s side in the conflict, but the number is certainly greater than what was expected from a neutral country with good relations with Russia. Even Brazilian parliamentarians fought in favor of Kiev, such as former deputy Artur do Val, who had a quick and scandalous performance in Ukraine, where he committed acts of sexual harassment against Ukrainian women. It is also known that over the last eight years several Brazilians have tried to join the Ukrainian neo-Nazi paramilitary troops to fight in Donbass, having been rejected due to the anti-Latin racism of these groups. Now these same militants are finding their way into the Ukrainian positions due to Kiev’s policy of accepting all foreign volunteers.

But it is absolutely impossible to analyze the situation without criticizing the destabilizing role that the Brazilian local media has played in its coverage of the events in Ukraine. Pro-Western media outlets report the conflict fallaciously, pointing to a non-existent “Ukrainian victory” and “ease” in fighting Moscow’s forces, portraying voluntary combat as a kind of “hunting safari” against Russians. Obviously, when the “volunteers” (almost all of them being paid private soldiers linked to mercenary companies) arrive on the battlefield, they are faced with situations very different from those reported by the journalists who encourage volunteering.

Agencies also have tried to publicize an image of “heroism” when talking about Brazilians fighting in Ukraine, ignoring important issues, such as the fact that they are cooperating with neo-Nazi militants and supporting a government that practices genocidal policies against the Russian population. Since the beginning of the Russian operation, Brazilian media agencies and Brazilian branches of foreign agencies have praised the “heroism” of the mercenaries who would be “helping to fight the invasion”, which also serves as propaganda and incentive for volunteering.

Brazilian media is not acting alone, but following the agenda imposed by the great world media agencies, which have increasingly bet on the narrative of “Ukrainian victory” as a way to raise the morale of the troops and justify the irresponsible military aid that the Western countries are sending to Kiev.

Private security companies hired to help Kiev are the ones that profit most from the propagation of this fallacious narrative among the public opinion, as they manage to convince an increasing number of volunteers to go and fight in Ukraine. In fact, some of these volunteers are not designated for direct combat but remain in safe places taking photos and videos to publish on the internet, reproducing propaganda to encourage more men to go – always trying to convince that combats are “easy” and “safe”, so that more people enlist in the mercenary companies. The result is that of the deluded enlisted men only a few are directed to propaganda, while others die on the battlefield.

Obviously, for Western countries and for private companies, investing in this type of propaganda is strategic and profitable, but not for Brazil. As a member of the BRICS, not participating in anti-Russia sanctions and being Moscow’s partner in several areas, the Brazilian government should act more incisively to monitor the destabilizing role that its media agencies are playing, seeking to prevent foreign narratives from taking Brazilians to die on the battlefield. Furthermore, it is not at all beneficial to Brasilia’s international image that the country is known for having a large number of citizens volunteering to fight alongside neo-Nazi battalions.

It is important to remember that mercenaries and “volunteers are not considered prisoners of war, but common criminals, which means that Brazilian citizens can be tried by courts in the liberated parts of Ukraine if they are captured. This type of situation will certainly generate diplomatic discomfort and, as Brazil and Russia are members of the BRICS, this is not a favorable condition for either side.

The best thing for the Brazilian government to do is to ban its citizens from volunteering in wars that do not concern the national interest of Brazil.

Lucas Leiroz is a researcher in Social Sciences at the Rural Federal University of Rio de Janeiro; geopolitical consultant.

July 6, 2022 Posted by | Mainstream Media, Warmongering, War Crimes | , | Leave a comment

Russia comments on UN Security Council expansion prospects

Samizdat | July 4, 2022

Moscow supports expanding the UN Security Council (UNSC), but not by admitting Germany and Japan, the Russian ambassador to China, Andrey Denisov, said on Monday.

Speaking during the plenary session of the UN World Peace Forum in Beijing, Denisov, whose key statements have been published on the embassy’s social media accounts, claimed that the Security Council has become a place where “the Western colleagues carry out propaganda, presenting their views as the ultimate truth.”

Therefore, he argued, there is a pressing need to reform the UN.

“Our country is in favor of expanding the composition of the UN Security Council on the basis of a broad consensus. To do this, it is necessary to increase the share of African, Asian and Latin American states,” Denisov said, explaining that this would make the council “more democratic.”

He added that Russia is open to the idea of membership for India and Brazil, but not Germany and Japan, “since this will not change the internal balance in any way.”

His remarks followed multiple calls from Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to strip Russia of its membership, amid Moscow’s military operation in his country. The US, however, has repeatedly made it clear that Russia will remain a permanent member of the UNSC, as there is no way to exclude the country.

There have been discussions about increasing the number of permanent Security Council members since the approval of the UN Charter in 1945. Brazil, Germany, India, and Japan have made the strongest demands.

The UNSC, whose primary responsibility is “the maintenance of international peace and security,” is the only UN body authorized to issue binding resolutions on member states.

Its five permanent members – China, France, Russia, the UK, and US – can block any resolution. The bloc of Western democratic and generally aligned permanent members – France, the UK, and US – is often called the ‘P3’.

July 4, 2022 Posted by | Aletho News | , , , | Leave a comment

BRICS Leaders Vow to Enhance & Expand New Development Bank

Samizdat – 23.06.2022

The leaders of Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa held their 14th annual summit on Thursday virtually. This year, the summit was chaired by China.

BRICS members vowed to widen the Shanghai-based New Development Bank (NDB) on Thursday, following the successful admission of Bangladesh, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Uruguay in September 2021.

“We look forward to further membership expansion in a gradual and balanced manner in terms of geographic representation and comprising of both developed and developing countries, to enhance the NDB’s international influence as well as the representation and voice of Emerging Market and Developing Countries (EMDCs) in global governance,” the 75-point joint declaration released after the summit read.

BRICS has supported the NDB’s goals of attaining the highest possible credit rating and institutional development. The BRICS member nations have also stressed that they have a similar approach to the global economic governance, and their mutual cooperation can make a valuable contribution to the post-Covid economic recovery.

Geopolitical Concerns

Leaders also discussed the ongoing crisis in Eastern Europe, recalling their national positions at different global forums, including the United Nations’ Security Council and General Assembly.

“We support talks between Russia and Ukraine. We have also discussed our concerns over the humanitarian situation in and around Ukraine,” the joint declaration said.

Amid border tensions between India and China, the leaders committed to “respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all States,” stressing the peaceful resolution of differences and disputes through dialogue and consultation.

The BRICS countries – which represent 24 percent of the global GDP and 16 percent of worldwide trade – further reiterated the need to resolve the Iranian nuclear issue through peaceful and diplomatic means as per international law. They stressed the importance of preserving the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, a deal reached between Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council in 2015. The stand-off between Iran and western nations continues following the US’ withdrawal from the JCPOA in May 2018.

June 23, 2022 Posted by | Economics | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Brazilian front-runner slams US billions for Ukraine

Samizdat | June 2, 2022

Brazilian presidential candidate Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva called out US President Joe Biden in two campaign speeches this week, citing the $40 billion in military aid Washington has pledged to Ukraine. Lula is polling far ahead of the incumbent, Jair Bolsonaro, in the upcoming presidential election.

“Biden, who has never made a speech to give $1 to those who are starving in Africa, announces $40 billion to help Ukraine buy weapons,” Lula said on Wednesday in Porto Alegre. “This can’t be!” he added.

The 76-year-old is the candidate of the leftist Party of Workers (PT), and currently the favorite to win the presidential election in October.

Speaking in Sao Paulo on Tuesday, Lula brought up the $40 billion in another context. How is it possible, he asked, that the world’s supposedly strongest economy is reduced to scouring the globe for baby formula – amid shortages in the US – even as Biden pledges billions in weapons sales to Kiev?

About half of the $40 billion package is directly earmarked for US weapons headed to Ukraine, while the rest would fund the government in Kiev, replenish the depleted Pentagon stockpiles, and fund US military deployments in Europe. Biden signed it on May 21 after both chambers of Congress passed it with token Republican opposition. The physical bill was flown to Asia, where Biden was visiting at the time, so he could formally attach his signature.

Lula has previously criticized Biden over the conflict in Ukraine, saying the US leader could have prevented it, but instead chose to give a blank check to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

“The United States has a lot of political clout. And Biden could have avoided [the conflict], not incited it,” Lula said in an interview with Time magazine in early May.

“And now we are going to have to foot the bill because of the war on Ukraine. Argentina, Bolivia will also have to pay. You’re not punishing [Russian President Vladimir] Putin. You’re punishing many different countries, you’re punishing mankind,” he added.

Lula was president of Brazil from 2003 to 2010 and remains one of the most popular Brazilian politicians ever. He was convicted on corruption charges and jailed in 2018 – during the interim presidency that had impeached his successor, Dilma Rousseff – but the conviction was annulled in 2021. The Brazilian Supreme Court ruled that Lula did not receive a fair trial, and cleared him to run for office again.

The most recent polls by Datafolha show Lula with a 21-point lead over Bolsonaro.

June 2, 2022 Posted by | Economics, Militarism | , , , | 3 Comments

Brazil rejected US oil request

Samizdat | May 10, 2022

The US asked Brazil in March to increase its crude oil output to curb soaring prices amid international sanctions against Russia, but Brazil refused, Reuters reported on Tuesday.

US government officials approached Brazil’s state-run oil company Petrobras, the outlet quoted its sources as saying, as crude prices started to rise against the backdrop of Russia’s military operation in Ukraine and the ensuing international sanctions.

The officials came away empty-handed, however, as Petrobras said that output levels were determined by business strategy rather than diplomacy and also that a significant short-term production boost would not be logistically possible, Reuters says.

Brazil is the world’s 11th largest oil exporter, with most of its crude going to China, the US, and India, according to the Observatory of Economic Complexity (OEC).

Also in March, the US approached Venezuela, which has the world’s largest proven oil reserves, offering to ease some of the sanctions on the country in exchange for increased oil exports to the US. However, Washington later backtracked on the issue.

Washington banned the import of Russian oil in early March, with US Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm saying that the country was on “war footing,” and calling on domestic producers to boost output. Last year, the US got 8% of its total petroleum imports from Russia, according to the US Energy Information Administration, with other major suppliers being Canada, Mexico, and Saudi Arabia.

May 10, 2022 Posted by | Economics | , | Leave a comment

Google complains about Brazil’s “fake news” bill, says it ignores “negative and unintended consequences”

By Cindy Harper | Reclaim The Net | March 17, 2022

Despite, in many cases, making itself the arbiter of what is and isn’t true, Big Tech giant Google is now concerned that Brazil’s proposed anti-fake news bill will do more harm than good.

The bill has previously been criticized by other online platforms, including Facebook and Twitter, as well as free speech groups.

In an open letter, Google Brazil’s president Fábio Coelho, criticized the proposed legislation, whose purpose is to handle “misinformation” and disinformation on platforms with more than 2 million users.

“We recognize the importance of debating solutions to this problem, but we are concerned that Congress is doing so without considering the negative and unintended consequences the bill could bring,” Coelho argued.

According to Coelho, the bill, which is yet to be voted by Congress, would make it easier to spread fake news.

The bill includes rules that would require platforms like Google to reveal how their algorithms work. These rules make Google’s services less secure, according to Coelho, and would have a negative impact on how small companies market their products.

He said that the rules Google would need to comply with could “significantly impair Google’s ability to combat abuse and spam and protect our users from scams.” He also argued that complying with the rules could “make search engines less secure for everyone and more susceptible to abuse and fraud.”

Coelho also warned that by exposing how its systems work, Google would provide malicious actors instructions on how to bypass its protections and harm the quality of search results.

He explained: “With this, they could manipulate this information to obtain a better position in our search ranking, harming in the process those who produce reliable and relevant content.”

In a joint letter published in February, Facebook, Twitter, and Mercado Libre, an online marketplace, also criticized the proposed legislation.

They said the bill had the potential to,”restrict people’s access to diverse and plural sources of information; discourage platforms from taking steps to maintain a healthy online environment; and negatively impact millions of small and medium businesses looking to connect with their consumers through advertising and digital services.”

March 18, 2022 Posted by | Full Spectrum Dominance | , | 2 Comments

NY Times Claims Brazil Is Turning Into Desert, As Foliage Growth Surges

By James Taylor | ClimateRealism | December 6, 2021

The New York Times published an article Friday titled, “A Slow-Motion Climate Disaster: The Spread of Barren Land.” The article claims global warming is causing drought in northeastern Brazil, turning the region into a desert. Objective satellite measurements of vegetation, however, show increasing vegetation in northeast Brazil and throughout Brazil as a whole, not the other way around. The Times article is merely another example of agenda-driven fake climate news.

In its subtitle, the article claims, “Brazil’s northeast, long a victim of droughts, is now effectively turning into desert. The cause? Climate change and the landowners who are most affected.” The article adds, “Climate change is intensifying droughts in Brazil’s northeast, leaving the land barren. The phenomenon, called desertification, is happening across the planet.”

NASA satellite instruments have precisely measured the amount of vegetation throughout the Earth since the early 1980s. NASA reported its findings in an article titled “Carbon Dioxide Fertilization Greening Earth, Study Finds.” According to NASA, “From a quarter to half of Earth’s vegetated lands has shown significant greening over the last 35 years largely due to rising levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide.” Most of the rest of the land shows little change one way or the other, while a very small amount of land shows a decline in vegetation.

As a whole, “The greening represents an increase in leaves on plants and trees equivalent in area to two times the continental United States,” NASA reports.

In the chart below, provided by NASA, you can see that nearly all of Brazil, including nearly all of northeast Brazil, is enjoying a significant increase in vegetation. Only a few, very small areas of Brazil and northeast Brazil are seeing a decline in vegetation.

The Times is right that where farmers or ranchers are deliberately removing rainforest and replacing it with farms or rangeland, vegetation declines. But that is not due to climate change, and those are about the only places in Brazil where vegetation is not increasing as the Earth modestly warms.

The simple, undeniable truth is that vegetation is increasing virtually everywhere in Brazil. The New York Times, in order to promote a fictitious climate crisis, is telling provably wrong lies to sell newspapers and to sell alarm.

December 9, 2021 Posted by | Fake News, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Science and Pseudo-Science | , | 1 Comment

The 1964 Coup in Brazil

Tales of the American Empire | November 11, 2021

In March 1963, American President John Kennedy proclaimed “We’ve got to do something about Brazil.” He said: “I think we ought to take every step that we can, be prepared to do everything that we need to do.” Kennedy believed Brazilian President Goulart was too friendly with anti-American radicals in Latin America. “Operation Brother Sam” was the code name given to Kennedy’s military plan to “prevent Brazil from becoming another China or Cuba.” After Kennedy was assassinated, President Lyndon Johnson instructed his staff to send a naval task force and aircraft to Brazil to support a coup organized by the CIA with Generals in the Brazilian military.

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“Brazil Marks 50th Anniversary of Military Coup; James Hershberg; National Security Archive; April 2, 2014; https://nsarchive2.gwu.edu/NSAEBB/NSA…

November 15, 2021 Posted by | Militarism, Timeless or most popular, Video, War Crimes | , , | Leave a comment

Brazilian court clears ex-President Lula of corruption charges in another legal win

RT | June 21, 2021

Brazil’s former leftist president, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, scored a fresh legal victory on Monday after a federal court acquitted him of passive corruption charges relating to alleged political favors, citing lack of evidence.

In 2017, Lula was accused of having granted political favors to automobile companies in exchange for donations of 6 million reals (around $1.2 million) to the campaign of his Workers’ Party (PT). The charges against the ex-president and other officials were filed after ‘Operation Zelotes’, which was launched by police to investigate alleged fraud and bribery in the sector.

But on Monday, federal judge Frederico Viana ruled that the case against the former president “lacks elements” that can substantiate any conviction against him and the other defendants.

“It is prudent and reasonable to pronounce an acquittal” of the ex-president, his former chief of staff, Gilberto Carvalho, and five other officials and businessmen, the judge said.

During his testimony last year, Lula denied the accusations, insisting that he never did any favors for the automobile firms.

In March, the court annulled all sentences handed to the 75-year-old political veteran under ‘Operation Lava Jato’ (‘Car Wash’) – a major anti-graft investigation in which three ex-presidents and numerous officials were indicted.

That ruling gave Lula the right to run for president again in 2022. He hasn’t yet announced plans to join the race, but recent polls put him ahead of Brazil’s current leader, Jair Bolsonaro, by 41% to 23% in the first round.

Lula remains highly popular in the country, which underwent a period of rapid economic growth during his years in office from 2003 to 2010, and saw millions escape poverty through his welfare programs.

June 21, 2021 Posted by | Civil Liberties | , | 4 Comments