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Europe’s Biggest Enemy Isn’t Russia Nor Islamic Terrorism, but Israel

By Martin Jay | Strategic Culture Foundation | September 25, 2022

When Joe Biden took office, many pundits said that at least relations between the U.S. and EU would be restored. But the Iran deal is the ultimate test of just how much he loves the old continent.

Just how far will Israel go to scupper the so-called Iran deal from being signed by both Iran and the West? And will it play a fair game or use underhand and covert tactics to achieve its goal of the deal never being signed? Recently, we have seen the talks in Vienna progress as even the Americans say that certain key negotiating points have been taken out of the deal from the Iranians which has made the negotiations move closer to an agreement; we have also seen though Israel pulling out all the stops, from a PR and lobbying perspective at least.

And then there is the murky subject of skullduggery to destroy the talks. If you’re one of these people who believes in fairies at the bottom of the garden or that certain toothpastes can make your teeth whiter, then you might not buy into Israel using Mossad to derail the deal. Attacks on U.S. forces for example in Iraq, supposedly carried out by Iran-backed militias would normally have most people pointing the finger at Iran, proclaiming that Tehran is not at all serious about the deal but just playing along for time so that it can roll out a nuclear bomb. Then there is the curious case of the Salman Rushdie attack, which, again, many would point out could be attributed to the Iranians who still have a very much ‘alive’ fatwa against the British writer. Indeed, even the Supreme Leader is reported to have made a comment against Rushdie when he heard of the knife attack.

Given even the Israeli media have speculated that Mossad did it, it would be easy to conclude an open and shut case right?

Yet the author believes, like the 9/11 attacks in New York, which was the dirty work of Mossad, that these previous attacks can also be attributed to the Israelis who may well be plotting a bigger attack in the U.S. which Iran can be framed for; in fact, Americans are so ignorant of Islam or anything to do with the Arab world, that such an attack doesn’t even need to be linked to Iran but simply “Islamic terrorists” which might have tenuous links with Tehran.

There is no limit for Israel in terms of how far it can go to block the deal as the elite there believes that the Iran deal would exponentially boost Tehran’s power given the impact of sanctions relief on the economy. But the emergence of Iran as a regional player, economically, will always be a threat to Israel especially as it throws the spotlight on the once pariah state and many will see the fraud of hatred between Israel and Iran for what it is. Just as for decades the West goaded the Gulf States about Iran, installing fear to such a point that it was America and the UK who cleaned up on weapons sales, Israel needs to keep this yarn alive that Iran is the threat both for internal politics with their own people and also to justify the obscene amount of military aid which is sent to Israel each year. But any hack in Lebanon who has connections with Hezbollah will tell you that this threat is phoney and that both sides have enormous respect for one another; in reality both sides are fooling their own people into buying into the threat of an attack as it’s good for political support. The recent claims by Matthew Levitt in the Israeli media for example that Hezbollah wants to start some skirmishes with Israel can’t be taken seriously from those who are close to the Shiite group in Lebanon who say simply that Hezbollah is too scared to do such a thing off its own bat; being directed by the Supreme Leader in Iran though is another matter.

Hezbollah and Indeed Israel’s game of smoke and mirrors in Lebanon makes some pundits question whether Iran is really serious about reaching out for a deal with the west to lift its sanctions, or just playing us all along to win time? Surely Israel can’t have it both ways as its desperate antics of late tend to contradict themselves.

Hezbollah serves Israel well as the latter can focus more of defence spending and other such border initiatives in preference for being held more accountable for its governance. For Hezbollah it’s exactly the same. The threat of Israel launching an attack, once again, is the very bedrock of Hezbollah support in Lebanon. Without that threat, the Shia group may well lose half of its support overnight. This is one of the reasons why Israel continues to bomb Syria, targeting Iranian and Hezbollah activities: to keep the dream alive. It’s another reason why Hezbollah has a despondent enthusiasm towards Lebanon securing gas drilling rights close to Israel’s maritime border.

Yet in this time of Europe’s economies diving into recessions, we should ask ourselves what is the bigger picture? If Israel fails to derail the Iran talks and once again the Iranians get a deal which appeases the Americans, then certainly their economy in Iran will return to the billion dollars a month trade with the EU. One minor detail though which is overlooked and carefully airbrushed out of mainstream media’s narrative is the impact on Europe if the deal goes ahead. Cheap Iranian oil being sent to most EU countries which are really suffering from the shortages of oil and gas and its present market price could be a godsend and would enrage the Israelis even further. Europeans and even the British would look at Iran through a more favourable prism. Many would argue that Iran should be brought back in from the cold, in preference to the loathing of Putin and the hatred generally towards Russia. At least we can talk to the Iranians, many will argue. This notion cannot have escaped the attention of the EU dogs of war in Brussels who seem to be detached from all realities about the Ukrainian war and their sanctions towards Russia. Is it that they are banking on cheap oil from Iran saving EU economies? Biden too must have been advised of how things will pan out. But cheap oil for EU countries doesn’t favour the U.S. directly whereas letting the Europeans sink in their own demise will actually boost the U.S. economy according to the Washington Post, So much for the special relationship with Europe. For both Israel and Washington.

September 26, 2022 Posted by | Economics, False Flag Terrorism | , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Iran: What is the Future of the Nuclear Deal?

By Viktor Mikhin – New Eastern Outlook – 22.09.2022 

While many around the world hoped for a positive reaction from the United States to Iran’s latest response, the European trio at the talks in Vienna (E3 – the UK, Germany, France) have separately issued a statement that could undo all the positive results of a year of painstaking negotiations. After Tehran responded to an American text submitted through the European Union’s coordinator for the Vienna talks, Josep Borrell, the latter passed it on to Washington. The Biden administration called the latest Iranian response “unconstructive” but refrained from responding formally, prompting speculation about the impact of the US midterm elections on negotiations in Vienna over the resumption of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, officially called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

Still, after days of guesswork and speculation, a response was given, but not from the American side, which had intended to do so. E3 released a joint statement that seems only to have delighted opponents of the JCPOA and caused bewilderment around the world. “As we move closer to an agreement, Iran has reopened separate issues, related to its legally binding international obligations under the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) and its safeguards agreement under the NPT concluded with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). This latest demand raises serious doubts as to Iran’s intentions and commitment to a successful outcome on the JCPOA. Iran’s position contradicts its legally binding obligations and jeopardizes prospects of restoring the JCPOA,” the E3 statement said demagogically and with no good reason.

This is despite the fact that Iran has long claimed that the IAEA has lost all credibility by making unfounded accusations that are politically motivated and emanate from the anti-JCPOA camp. In other words, and this fact has now become clear, the IAEA is simply a tool in the hands of the West, not an independent UN body. The E3 countries also seemed keen to make a poorly veiled threat against Iran, stating, “Given Iran’s failure to conclude the deal on the table, we will consult, alongside international partners, on how best to address Iran’s continued nuclear escalation and lack of cooperation with the IAEA regarding its NPT (non-proliferation treaty) safeguards agreement.”

The E3 joint statement was seen by experts around the world as an irresponsible move and a servile, obsequious submission to its master, the US. Reading this statement, one gets the impression that it is the E3 that is the aggrieved party that has lost over 300 billion dollars and 1,000 lives in the last 3 years because Iran withdrew from the JCPOA. Apparently, Brussels wants everyone to believe that Iran, not the US, has blatantly violated and completely reneged on all its obligations, subsequently violating all 11 commitments it had made to rectify the situation. After all, it is both well known and not disputed by anyone in the world that it was the US that unreasonably withdrew from the JCPOA and imposed further brutal sanctions on Iran, causing the Iranian people to suffer.

In addition to the separatist actions disregarding the views of Russia and China and the utter irresponsibility, the statement also undermined the ongoing and subsequent negotiations, deepening the atmosphere of distrust. Moreover, and quite obviously, the E3 countries have only strengthened the position of the opponents of the JCPOA, which is apparently what they were aiming for. “It is regrettable that by [issuing] such an ill-considered statement, the three European countries have followed in the footsteps of the Zionist regime down a path that will lead to the failure of negotiations. It is obvious that if such an approach continues, the E3 should also accept responsibility for its consequences,” Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Nasser Kanaani said bluntly.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, trying to justify his loyalist position to the US, demagogically signaled a lack of expectation on his part that an agreement with Iran would in the near future restore Tehran’s shattered nuclear deal with world powers. Then, realizing that the best defense is a good offense, he unceremoniously declared that Iran had no reason not to sign and that European countries would remain “patient.” And what else could the 9th Federal Chancellor say after meeting in Berlin with Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid, who insisted that restoring the 2015 agreement would be a “critical mistake”? Incidentally, Germany still pays reparations to those Jews who were forced by Nazi Germany to leave as evacuees.

It appears that provocative pressure from Israel as well as other factors have managed to halt or delay Washington’s progress towards a return to a nuclear deal with Iran. This is clear from statements by senior Israeli officials, analysis by Israeli research centers and the media. There was a real celebration in Israel, as officials could not hide their joy at the E3 statement. “Following the Americans, yesterday the E3 countries announced that a nuclear agreement with Iran will not be signed in the near future, that the IAEA’s files opened on Iran will not be closed,” Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid cheerfully told a cabinet meeting. He thanked the leaders of France, Britain and Germany for their “strong position” on the issue. Then a wave of boasting and bravado swept over the Prime Minister and he took all credit for the collapse of the nuclear deal, saying, “In recent months, we held a discreet and intensive dialogue with them, and presented them with up-to-date intelligence information about Iranian activity at nuclear sites.”  And further: “Israel is conducting a successful diplomatic campaign to stop the nuclear agreement and prevent the lifting of sanctions on Iran.”

It may be recalled that as the negotiations approached a crucial milestone, Israel began to take active steps to counter this, including visits to Washington by Mossad director David Barney, Israeli National Security Advisor Eyal Hulata and Minister of Defense Benny Gantz. Israel said the diplomatic onslaught was aimed at preventing the renewal of the nuclear agreement, which Tel Aviv sees as a threat to its security. Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid said he would visit the US this month to meet US President Joe Biden ahead of the UN General Assembly meetings to discuss the Iranian issue. “Israel is conducting a successful diplomatic campaign to stop the nuclear agreement and prevent the lifting of sanctions on Iran,” World Israel News stressed. Apparently, Israel and its leadership have decided that they are above the UN, and only they should solve the world’s problems and only in their own interests. That is why now more than ever, the challenge of transforming our world from a unipolar to a multipolar one, where all countries have equal rights and resolve issues in the common interest, is relevant.

Lapid, who visited Germany to discuss his country’s concerns about the agreement, said that “it is not over yet – there is still a long way to go, but there are encouraging signs.” He was referring to Israel’s success in dissuading the US administration from returning to the agreement. The Times of Israel quoted an unnamed senior Israeli official as saying that during recent talks with Biden, the Israeli Prime Minister was told that the nuclear deal was not being discussed and would not be signed anytime soon. According to the website, Lapid has recently become increasingly convinced that Washington’s return to the nuclear deal is unlikely. Iran’s 2015 nuclear deal with world powers is “in the ER room” and unlikely to be extended any time soon, if at all, Israeli Minister of Defense Benny Gantz said after European leaders expressed doubts about Tehran’s willingness to revive the pact.

“We cannot predict when the deal will be signed by major world powers and Iran,” Aleef Sabbagh, a political analyst, told Al-Ahram Weekly. “Right now, it’s not even close.” He noted that pressure from Tel Aviv appears to have delayed the signing of the agreement, and Israel’s diplomatic war against the deal has so far achieved some of its goals.  However, several Israeli analysts point out that the delay in finalizing the agreement is linked to some of its details, in particular the IAEA’s investigation into traces of uranium at three sites that Tehran has not previously disclosed. Iran at the same time is demanding the cessation of this investigation as a precondition for a deal, and is apparently not about to back down. Israel, for its part, will continue to apply pressure until the last minute to prevent the signing of the agreement, focusing its attention on organizing a tough international stance in support of the IAEA investigations. This would require the establishment of a mechanism to control the funds Iran gains access to in order to ensure that they do not fall to Tehran’s allies in the region.

The Israeli opposition, led by former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, claims that the US administration has decided to return to the agreement, but insists on more favorable terms. He also accuses the incumbent Lapid government of failing to convince Washington of Tel Aviv’s security demands, which would be harmed by the agreement. However, the current Prime Minister argues that his cabinet is working quietly and diligently and has so far succeeded in blocking the agreement. Israel often repeats that it will not be bound by the agreement if it is signed, and reserves the right not to allow Iran to become a nuclear power. Tel Aviv has also frequently threatened to resort to the military option to achieve this goal if “Israel’s security needs” demand it, despite all the peace treaty efforts of many countries around the world.

September 22, 2022 Posted by | Aletho News | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

US ‘Trampled Upon’ Iran Nuclear Deal, Can’t Tolerate Independent States, Raisi Tells UNGA

Samizdat – 21.09.2022

The United States “trampled upon” the Iran nuclear deal, Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi said during his Wednesday address to the United Nations General Assembly. The Iranian president stressed that the Islamic Republic is not striving to obtain nuclear weapons.

“The American government [has] trampled upon the JCPOA [Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action a.k.a. Iran nuclear deal]. Some time ago, the former US president announced that Daesh was created by the US. To us, it makes no difference who created [it]. What matters is that a government outside this region decided to bring havoc to the region,” Raisi said.

He further condemned Washington’s meddling in the region’s affairs and refusal to take the interests of other countries into account. Raisi noted that the US can’t tolerate countries that act independently and puts its own priorities over those of other states.

Raisi also declared that the existing world order, where international organizations had become “instruments of repression” and economic sanctions are used as leverage to pressure other countries, no longer enjoys widespread support. He stated that a new world order is starting to take shape in its place and stressed the necessity to create a more “fair” world.

The Iranian president said that late IRGC General Qasem Soleimani, who was killed in the US strike in January 2020, “fought against oppression” of the current world order. Raisi condemned his killing by the US as a crime and said that Iran will insist on holding a fair trial for those responsible.

“The government on the other side of the planet decides to create chaos in our region through the bloodshed of women and children. But the Islamic Republic opposed this destructive dynamic, and Qassem Soleimani became the leader who opposed terrorism,” Raisi said.

Raisi’s speech to the UNGA came amid a pause in negotiations on reviving the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, which effectively collapsed following the unilateral US withdrawal from it in 2018. The sides have since exchanged a new draft agreements, but there has been no suggestion of an imminent signing. Western parties to the accord accused Iran, which demands guaranties the deal won’t collapse again, of unreasonable demands, while Tehran slammed the unconstructive approach of certain countries.

September 21, 2022 Posted by | Aletho News | , , , | 2 Comments

More Disinformation from Israel Biden caves to Jewish pressure, as usual

BY PHILIP GIRALDI • UNZ REVIEW  • SEPTEMBER 20, 2022

Joe Biden ran for president in 2020 with a pledge to restore the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) with Iran, which Donald Trump had withdrawn from in May 2018 under pressure from Republican Party Jewish donors, most notably underwritten by an estimated $100 million coming from now deceased Sheldon Adelson’s Las Vegas casino fortune. The JCPOA might plausibly be regarded as the only major diplomatic success for the Barack Obama Administration, which featured Biden as Vice President, and it was good for the US due to its curb on proliferation, as well as being a benefit for the entire Middle East region as it made less likely a “weapons of mass destruction” arms race involving the Egyptians and Saudis.

Predictably, however, the pledge did not please the state of Israel. For three decades, Israel has been urging the United States to use force to eliminate what it refers to as the Iranian nuclear weapons program, a program that does not exist and might never have existed. The nuclear weapons threat raised by Israel might be seen as a disinformational wedge issue to bring about the complete destruction of the Iranian military capability by the United States. Israel seeks to exploit its influence over the US government and media to bring that about.

To be sure, weakening Iran and possibly even replacing its government is the most compelling issue for Israel and its powerful US domestic lobby, but the Israeli plan is much broader than that, to make the United States the junior partner providing the money and weapons in an effort to militarily dominate the Middle East. Knowing that both Donald Trump and Joe Biden were willing to concede actual US national interests in response to Israeli pressure, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his replacement Yair Lapid have sent waves of top-level officials to cajole both Congress and the White House into giving Jerusalem whatever it wants.

This flow of “experts” arriving with their maps and charts in hand has increased as the realization that a politically weak and clueless Joe Biden will cave under even the slightest pressure has grown. Biden has demonstrated particular gutlessness in his recent failure to seek a full investigation and consequences for the Israeli Army murder of Palestinian-American journalist Shireen Abu Akleh, deferring to Israel’s complete unwillingness to establish some form of accountability and Prime Minister Lapid’s declaration that the current level of his army’s use of force against the Palestinians will continue. Biden has also backed down on rejoining the JCPOA, declaring that the issue is now “off the table.” Secretary of State Tony Blinken has confirmed that decision, declaring that any new arrangement with Iran is “unlikely.”

Preceding the Administration’s decision to ignore American interests in deference to Israeli concerns, there were frequent visits to Washington by Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz and also by other senior officials who arrived in DC to sell a product. The latest pitch involves the Iranian threat and the continuation of a free hand to attack neighboring Syria but there also has been a bizarre drive to have the US State Department declare that the Palestinian civic and human rights organizations that Israel has been shutting down are “terrorist organizations.” Even though a US intelligence and law enforcement agency review has declared that not to be the case, the Biden team is predictably waffling under Israeli pressure. This is how State Department spokesman Ned “Pencil Neck” Price responded to a question regarding the Israeli claims: “Our Israeli partners have in recent days provided us with additional information. They provided this information not only to the department but also to a range of our interagency partners. We are continuing to review this and that process is ongoing.” Price added that he didn’t want to “prejudge” the information. Pretty gutless Ned, huh? Even for you, who also excused the killing of Abu Akleh, saying “it was a horrific tragedy, but not one that should be prosecuted. This was not an intentional, targeted killing. This was the tragic result of a gunfight in the context of an Israeli raid in the West Bank.” Interestingly, Ned surely knew that there was no gunfight anywhere near where she was killed, which makes him a liar as well as a man bereft of any morality. And I love the fact that Ned declares we Americans are “partners” with Israel. Junior partners, clearly.

Israel has never provided any actual hard intelligence to back up its claims, though it has several times been caught fabricating evidence. Senator Bernie Sanders’ Foreign Policy Advisor Matt Duss tweeted after the latest round of pressure to call the Palestinians “terrorists” that “This isn’t about intel sharing or security. It’s political pressure to justify political repression. The admin knows, as our allies do, that the designations are false. The question is whether [the Biden Administration is] willing to do anything about it.”

One should consider that for Israel, the United States, Russia, Ukraine and nearly everyone else what is passed off as intelligence is anything but. It is instead more often than not a tightly woven argument to convince other countries, the public and the media that something that is supportive of one’s policies is true and should be considered corroborative. This is how we the people have now come to see global events through the prism of an official lie factory. Another recent ploy by Israel to enable its continued bombardment of neighboring Syria is a tale of how Israeli intelligence has developed information that Iran is using Syria to construct technically sophisticated weapons that will be used against the Israelis. Defense Minister Benny Gantz, speaking in New York City last Monday, claimed that Iran has used “10 military facilities in Syria to produce advanced missiles and weapons for its proxies.”

One might observe that Gantz’s use of a map to show where the alleged facilities are located was convincing of nothing as it was a graphic produced by the Israeli government, somewhat like the dreck that is flowing out of Ukraine at the moment. And there is a bit of logical inconsistency in the tale in that Iran has its own arms industry and does not need to build weapons in Syria. There is also the question of why is Gantz speaking in New York? The answer is obvious. Israel is speaking to a gullible American audience about the alleged Iranian threat and Syrian culpability. Predictably, nothing was said about Israel’s recent war crime bombing of the international airport in Aleppo.

And there’s more, as there always is with Israel. The Israeli government is also running full speed with brand new claims about an alleged secret Iranian nuclear weapons program. The information was presented to the US and German governments by Prime Minister Yair Lapid with the claim that it “proves the Iranians are cheating as we speak.” Lapid told the Germans that the Biden Administration had hardened its stance against Iran vis-à-vis the JCPOA negotiations in response to the new information. What the new intelligence consists of might lead to some speculation, but Israel’s claims along those lines have been frequent for the past twenty years and also regularly found to be both malicious and fabricated.

Finally, who says that the Israelis and their rabid Jewish supporters in the United States don’t have a sense of humor? A story making the rounds in the Jewish media in the US and featured in the Jewish News Syndicate asks the question “[Why] 21 years later, [the] US still doesn’t recognize Iran’s role in 9/11.?” The discussion features Caroline Glick and David Wurmser, two noted neocons and Israel-firsters. Wurmser is of course described as “an expert on Middle East affairs” rather than as a Zionist extremist while Glick, who lives in Israel, is among the most rabid journalists calling for “deterrence and containment” of Iran, with the US military doing the heavy lifting. Glick also recalls 9/11, stating that “America’s willful blindness to Iran’s role in global terrorism, including in the September 11 attacks, is part of the collective amnesia about the events of September 11.” When I stopped laughing, I continued reading to see if the two honorable Zionists would also mention the Israeli art students who were all over the place spying on the US and the five Israeli dancing Shlomo “movers” who clearly had prior knowledge of what was about to take place and were seen celebrating the sight of the burning twin towers. And then there was the quote by then Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu concerning 9/11 that “We [Israelis] are benefitting from one thing, and that is the attack on the twin towers and Pentagon, and the American struggle in Iraq.” So, Israel actually had a motive. Makes you wonder… Who really did 9/11?

Philip M. Giraldi, Ph.D., is Executive Director of the Council for the National Interest, a 501(c)3 tax deductible educational foundation (Federal ID Number #52-1739023) that seeks a more interests-based U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. Website is councilforthenationalinterest.org, address is P.O. Box 2157, Purcellville VA 20134 and its email is inform@cnionline.org.

September 21, 2022 Posted by | Deception, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Mainstream Media, Warmongering, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes, Wars for Israel | , , , , | 2 Comments

Iran Needs Lifting of Sanctions, Guarantees From US to Revive Nuclear Deal, Raisi Says

Samizdat – September 16, 2022

Tehran needs the removal of sanctions and guarantees from Washington to restore the nuclear deal, also known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi said.

“Removal of sanctions should be accompanied with the resolution of safeguards. There are some political and baseless accusations against Islamic Republic of Iran when it comes to safeguard issues,” Raisi told the Al Jazeera broadcaster on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summit in the Uzbek city of Samarkand.

The president noted that it is necessary to finalize these safeguard issues but it is not yet time to have face-to-face talks with the United States as Washington’s sincerity is questionable, according to Al Jazeera.

“Regarding the guarantees, if we have the trustworthy guarantees, and we have the lasting removal of the sanctions, not temporary removal of sanctions, and if there is a lasting solution for the safeguard issues, for sure it is possible to reach agreement,” Raisi added.

The JCPOA deal was sealed in 2015 by China, France, Germany, Iran, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States, as well as the European Union. Former US President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew from the deal in 2018 and reimposed sanctions on Tehran.

Talks between Iran and the global powers to revive the deal and end US sanctions on Iranian oil exports have gained momentum recently. On August 31, Borrell said that an agreement to revive the 2015 nuclear deal will hopefully be reached in the next few days.

On September 2, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kanaani said that Tehran sent a “constructive” response to Washington’s proposals on the revival of the JCPOA, while a State Department spokesperson said the US had received Tehran’s response but described it as “not constructive.”

September 16, 2022 Posted by | Economics, Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity, Wars for Israel | , , | Leave a comment

Global Oil Output Short of 6Mln BPD Due to Western Policy: Russian Energy Official

Samizdat – 14.09.2022

ST. PETERSBURG, Russia – A significant investment shortage into traditional energy sources caused by the Western sanctions and environmental, social, and governance (ESG) policy has caused a global production deficit of 5-6 million barrels per day, Russian First Deputy Energy Minister Pavel Sorokin said on Wednesday.

“The current situation on the energy market is not a result of the last few months but a consequence of the policy that was being created by the West during the last decade. The sanctions, which were imposed not only on Russia but on other countries, as well as the green agenda and the ESG policy of the last 10-15 years caused a significant shortage of investments into traditional energy sources. It has deprived the world of 5-6 barrels of oil per day, according to our estimates,” Sorokin said at the 11th St. Petersburg International Gas Forum.

The official also said that traditional energy sources are short of at least 250-270 billion euros ($25.1- $27 billion) in investments per year, adding that the slowdown in demand for oil and gas in the developing countries in Latin America, Africa and in the Asia-Pacific region affect the global economy, increasing the risks of economic recession.

The 11th St. Petersburg International Gas Forum (SPIGF), which is taking place from September 13-16 in the Expoforum Convention and Exhibition Centre, is hosting more than 80 events with the participation of 700 speakers from 20 countries. It aims to outline prospects for the further development of the sector, according to the organizers.

Among the main events of the SPIGF 2022 convention program are the international scientific and practical conference “Underground Gas Storage: Reliability and Efficiency” and plenary session “Gas Engine Fuel: a Reliable Solution in the Face of New Social-Economical and Environmental Challenges.”

September 14, 2022 Posted by | Economics, Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity | , | Leave a comment

US, E3 untrustworthy; Iran pursues an agreement to secure its interests: Marandi

Press TV – September 11, 2022

An advisor to the Iranian negotiating team has described the US government and the three European signatories to the 2015 nuclear deal as “untrustworthy”, stating that Tehran pursues an agreement that best secures its national interests.

During an interview on Saturday night, Mohammad Marandi said Iran was not the party that withdrew from the 2015 deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), emphasizing that the three European countries (France, Britain, and Germany) obediently follow the policies of whoever is in the White House.

He added that Iran knows that any possible accord will fail unless the Western countries put an end to their false accusations against Tehran.

Marandi noted that the European troika and Washington are aware of the peacefulness of the Iranian nuclear program, stressing that Iran wants to reach an agreement that would secure its rights.

During the interview with the Lebanese Arabic-language al-Mayadeen television news network, he continued, “We cannot trust the Americans and Europeans,” highlighting that “the three European countries are all allies of the United States. They are not neutral, and we should not be deceived by their propaganda.”

Marandi also took a swipe at Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Rafael Grossi, stating that he “stands with Europeans and Americans, and is submissive to them.”

The advisor to the Iranian negotiating team went on to say that a European official once confirmed during the course of JCPOA revival negotiations in the Austrian capital of Vienna that Iran’s demands are rightful, but “the Americans are the ones who are delaying and procrastinating” the talks.

Marandi stressed that Iran is “ready to sign the agreement,” noting that “the Europeans need the agreement more than Iran, because of their need for gas.”

On the issue of Iranian natural gas, he told al-Mayadeen that “Iran sells its gas and oil, and is able to obtain financial revenues,” adding that “the longer the agreement is delayed, the bigger the problem for Europe would be because it wants gas as the winter is approaching.”

The European energy crisis comes as tensions persist between Russia and the West over Moscow’s offensive in Ukraine. Natural gas prices have soared in Europe to all-time highs since the West began unleashing waves of sanctions against Moscow.

Ever since, Russia’s Gazprom has drastically reduced its gas deliveries to Europe, saying that the anti-Russia sanctions have blocked the delivery of a turbine needed to stream gas to Europe via pipeline.

‘A weak Biden’

As for the United States, Marandi said, “US President Joe Biden is weak, and suffers from internal and economic problems before the midterm elections.”

Marandi added that “the Europeans have no problem in reaching an agreement, but rather the problem lies with weak Biden [administration].”

On Saturday, Iran slammed the latest “unconstructive and ill-considered” statement issued by the three European signatories to the JCPOA, saying they must accept the consequences if it continues to follow Israel’s lead.

“It is regrettable that by [issuing] such an ill-considered statement, the three European countries have followed in the footsteps of the Zionist regime down a path that will lead to the failure of negotiations,” the Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Nasser Kan’ani said.

‘US’s support for terrorists’

Marandi also condemned Washington over its support for the terrorist Mujahedin-e-Khalq Organization (MKO) that has been hosted by Albania since 2016, stating that its members have been carrying out attacks against Iran.

On Wednesday, Albania, which has for years hosted the anti-Iran MKO terrorists in collusion with the US, severed diplomatic ties with Tehran, accusing it of orchestrating a July “cyberattack” against Tirana.

Kan’ani identified the United States, the Israeli regime, and the MKO as the “third parties” that have propelled Tirana into taking the decision.

Russia’s Permanent Representative to the International Organizations in Vienna, Mikhail Ulyanov, described the latest statement issued by three major European powers about Iran as “very untimely”.

“Very untimely indeed. Right at a critical moment at the #ViennaTalks and on the eve of the session of the #IAEA Board of Governors,” Ulyanov, who also leads the Russian delegation at the Vienna talks on Iran nuclear deal, wrote in a tweet.

In a press release on Saturday, France, Britain, and Germany raised serious doubts as to Iran’s intentions and commitment to a successful outcome on the JCPOA, claiming that Tehran’s position contradicts its legally binding obligations and jeopardizes prospects of restoring the nuclear deal.

The European trio said they have “negotiated with Iran, in good faith, since April 2021, to restore and fully implement” the JCPOA, along with other participants to the deal and the United States.

The United States, under former president Donald Trump, abandoned the agreement in May 2018 and reinstated unilateral sanctions that the agreement had lifted.

The talks to salvage the agreement kicked off in the Austrian capital city of Vienna in April last year, months after Joe Biden succeeded Trump, with the intention of examining Washington’s seriousness in rejoining the deal and removing anti-Iran sanctions.

Despite notable progress, the US indecisiveness and procrastination caused multiple interruptions in the marathon talks.

September 11, 2022 Posted by | Wars for Israel | , , , , , , | 1 Comment

9 Russian planes in Iran to receive maintenance: Minister

Press TV – September 7, 2022

Iran’s transport minister Rostam Qassemi says Russia has commissioned Iranian aviation companies for maintenance tasks on its airplanes.

Qassemi said on Wednesday that nine Russian passenger planes were in Iran to receive maintenance as he touted the technology existing in the Iranian civil aviation sector to carry out overhaul and inspection works on various types of aircraft.

“We have been in a good position in recent months in terms of aircraft maintenance,” said the minister without elaborating on the types of the Russian planes under repair in Iran.

The announcement comes amid reports of close cooperation between Iran and Russia to minimize the impacts of foreign sanctions on their economies.

Russian authorities have declared on several occasions that Moscow has been using the experience of Iranian companies and government agencies in dealing with foreign sanctions.

Iran and Russia have signed major deals in recent months to boost their economic, trade and energy cooperation.

Iran came under an inclusive regime of American sanctions in 2018 after Washington unilaterally withdrew from an international deal on Iran’s nuclear program.

The United States and allies imposed a raft of similar and even tougher sanctions on Russia in February after Moscow launched a military operation in Ukraine.

Experts say US sanctions failed to reach their ultimate objective of forcing Iran into major political and military concessions. They insist the bans even created an opportunity for Iran to diversify its economy away from crude revenues and rely more on its domestic resources.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Wednesday during an economic forum in Vladivostok that Russia was gaining from Western sanctions, saying Moscow saw more opportunities in entering markets in the Middle East and Iran after the sanctions were imposed.

September 7, 2022 Posted by | Economics, Russophobia | , , | 1 Comment

OPEC+ agrees on oil output cut

BY M. K. BHADRAKUMAR | INDIAN PUNCHLINE | SEPTEMBER 6, 2022 

The OPEC+ meeting at Vienna on Monday came amidst two events affecting the oil market — the G7 finance ministers decision to endorse the US proposal regarding price cap on Russia’s oil exports with effect from December 5 and secondly, Gazprom’s announcement on cutting off all gas supplies to Europe indefinitely. 

Although notionally these are unrelated events, the fact remains that the energy scene is increasingly fraught with uncertainties and there are many variables at work such as fears of a global recession, the continuing difficulty to conclude a US-Iran deal on JCPOA that would have lifted the sanctions against Iran’s oil exports. 

The statement by the OPEC secretariat on Monday’s meeting in Vienna has sent out a powerful message that not only is there not going to be any increased oil production but a token cut of 100,000 bpd has been agreed upon in September to bolster prices that have slid on recession fears. Oil prices jumped after the announcement. US crude rose 3.3%, to $89.79 per barrel, while international benchmark Brent was up 3.7%, to $96.50, after the decision.

This is in the face of attempts by the Biden Administration to push through a decision on an additional increase in production so that oil prices would go down. Saudi Arabia and the UAE did not agree to the US suggestion, saying that it was outside the scope of the OPEC + agreement. 

The cut in oil production by 100,000 bpd is largely symbolic because OPEC+ members are estimated to be some 2.9 million bpd behind the collective quotas allotted to them. But the point is, this is the first OPEC+ oil supply cut in more than a year and it shows that the OPEC+ will not hesitate to take preemptive action. 

Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak said on Monday that expectations of weaker global economic growth were behind the decision by Moscow and its OPEC allies to cut oil output. Novak said the global energy market is characterised by heightened uncertainty at the moment. “We are not talking about price formation, but about the adequacy of supply on the market, so that on the one hand there is no excess, and on the other there is no shortage.” 

The Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman has been more forthright, saying, “This (OPEC+) decision is an expression of will that we will use all of the tools in our kit. The simple tweak shows that we will be attentive, preemptive and proactive in terms of supporting the stability and the efficient functioning of the market to the benefit of market participants and the industry.”

The Saudi Minister was implying that the OPEC+ also faces a market where concerns about the strength of demand have started to outweigh supply fears. In fact, crude futures have lost about 20% in the past three months on the threat of a global economic slowdown. 

Besides, OPEC+ weighs in on the likelihood that the negotiations to revive a nuclear accord and remove US sanctions on Iran’s petroleum sales might result in a successful agreement in which case, more than 1 million barrels a day will enter world markets shortly, according to the International Energy Agency. 

However, the latest indications are that the Biden Administration may find it politically expedient to postpone the future of the JCPOA (2015 Iran nuclear deal) to the post-midterm election period in the US beyond November 7. Of course, both the US and Iran (as well as the European Union) are interested in reaching an agreement and want to restore the JCPOA on favourable terms.     

At any rate, the OPEC+ move on Monday can only be seen as a rebuke from Saudi Arabia, the leading member of OPEC, to the Biden administration’s call for its Middle Eastern ally to increase production at a time of rising inflation and western sanctions on Russia’s energy industry. The OPEC+ decision comes less than two months after US President Joe Biden’s visit to Saudi Arabia when he said he expected the kingdom to take “further steps” to increase the supply of oil in the “coming weeks”.

After the OPEC+ decision, the White House said Biden is committed to shoring up energy supplies and lowering prices. “The president has been clear that energy supply should meet demand to support economic growth and lower prices for American consumers and consumers around the world,” White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said in a statement.

But beyond asking Gulf states to boost production and unleashing crude from emergency stockpiles, western countries have no leverage in the matter, since industry investment and new drilling have lagged behind demand and a significant increase in output is not to be expected.

The OPEC+ has scheduled its next meeting for October 5 but signalled it may hold talks even before that “to address market developments, if necessary.” According to Reuters, Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman, half-brother of Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman, has been empowered to intervene whenever necessary to stabilise crude markets by calling for a meeting at any time. 

Quite obviously, things are moving in a direction where the G7 decision to impose a price cap on Russian oil is likely becoming the business of the OPEC+ as well, albeit indirectly. Russia has said it will stop supplying oil to countries that support the G7 idea. Signals from the physical market  suggest that supply remains tight and many OPEC states are producing below targets even as fresh Western sanctions are threatening Russian exports following up on the G7 idea. 

An unspoken factor is that the G7 move sets a precedent that is a cause of concern for all OPEC countries. Today, the G7 is cracking the whip on Russia over Ukraine, which has technically nothing to do with the oil market. Tomorrow, it could as well be on, for example, democracy deficit in the Gulf states. Simply put, the western powers are straying onto turf that OPEC has jealously guarded as its preserve for the past 62 years since the cartel was established — and it is doing so by politicising the core issue of oil prices by introducing extraneous geopolitical considerations. 

At any rate, while speaking on the OPEC meeting’s outcome on Monday, Russian minister Novak said, “We shall examine how the market situation will evolve because there are many uncertainties” not least regarding “the declaration by G7 leaders regarding capping of the price of Russian oil” which will sow “uncertainty” on the global market. (Interestingly, Chinese Foreign Ministry has called on the G7 to reconsider its move: “Oil is a global commodity. Ensuring global energy supply security is vitally important. We hope relevant countries will make constructive efforts to help ease the situation through dialogue and consultation, instead of doing the opposite.”) 

The bottom line is that the US entreaties to disband the OPEC+ are getting nowhere. The OPEC meeting in Vienna on Monday underscored in its final statement that “OPEC+ has the commitment, the flexibility, and the means within the existing mechanisms of the Declaration of Cooperation to deal with these challenges (higher volatility and increased uncertainties) and provide guidance to the market.” 

The message is loud and clear: Saudi Arabia and Russia who form the axis of the OPEC+ are closely coordinating on shaping the world oil market even as they could be competing for market share. 

September 5, 2022 Posted by | Economics | , , , , | 2 Comments

Nuclear official slams IAEA demands from Iran as ‘excessive’

Press TV – August 30, 2022

The spokesman for the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) has described the International Atomic Energy Agency’s (IAEA) demands as “excessive,” saying they cannot be implemented due to the sanctions in place against the Islamic Republic.

“We consider the IAEA’s demands excessive, because their implementation is impossible due to sanctions,” Behrouz Kamalvandi said on Tuesday.

Kamalvandi elaborated on the current scope of Iran-IAEA ties, saying Tehran’s cooperation with the UN nuclear watchdog is based on the Comprehensive Safeguards Agreement (CSA), which, he added, revolves around the agency’s inspection of nuclear materials.

Aside from the CSA, he added, countries adhering to the Additional Protocol, have undertaken to give the IAEA access for inspection of their uranium enrichment equipment as well.

The official said Iran used to provide the UN nuclear watchdog with even broader access for inspection as part of the 2015 nuclear deal, which is currently in trouble due to Washington’s unilateral exit.

Iran, he said, decided to restrict the scope of its cooperation with the IAEA to the SCA under a law approved by the Iranian Parliament in late 2020, entitled “The Strategic Action Plan to Counter Sanctions.”

The law tasked the Iranian administration to take a set of measures to protect national interests, including limiting cooperation with the IAEA, in response to Washington’s withdrawal from the 2015 nuclear deal and the European signatories’ failure to uphold their contractual commitments to Tehran.

Kamalvandi added, however, that “if the West lifts the sanctions and lives up to its own commitments under the nuclear deal, Iran will reciprocate,” he added.

Referring to Iran’s removal of 27 surveillance cameras at different nuclear sites, Kamalvandi said that if the other parties return to their commitments, it would be possible for the devices and cameras to be reinstalled.

Tehran will continue its constructive cooperation with the UN nuclear agency in line with its commitments under the CSA, the official added.

Iran ratified the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) in 1970, which requires nonnuclear-weapon states to accept comprehensive IAEA safeguards. Four years later, Tehran concluded a comprehensive safeguards agreement with the IAEA.

As a goodwill gesture, Iran voluntarily chose to have extensive cooperation with the UN nuclear agency, beyond the safeguards agreement.

Back in June, Iran decided to stop its voluntary cooperation with the UN nuclear agency, while stressing that Iran’s commitments under the agreement will continue.

Iran and the IAEA are currently locked in a dispute triggered by the agency’s Israeli-influenced accusations, which were leveled against Tehran’s peaceful nuclear activities just as the Islamic Republic and other parties to the Iran deal appeared close to an agreement on reviving the Iran deal.

Iran asserts that an agreement on the revival of the Iran nuclear deal hinges on the settlement of Safeguards issues between Tehran and the IAEA, and that without settling those issues, reviving the 2015 accord makes no sense.

Last week, IAEA chief Rafael Grossi repeated previous accusations against the Islamic Republic, calling on Iran to explain what he claimed to be “traces of enriched uranium” found at the country’s nuclear research sites three years ago.

In an interview with with CNN on August 22, Grossi said the Agency would not drop that probe without “technically credible explanations” from Iran.

This is while Iran has already provided the necessary information and access to the IAEA.

August 30, 2022 Posted by | Wars for Israel | , , | Leave a comment

Israel must ‘eliminate’ nuclear arsenal: Official

The Cradle | August 23, 2022

On 23 August, Iran’s top UN Envoy Majid Takht Ravanchi decried the lack of progress over efforts to denuclearize West Asia, and called on Israel – the region’s only nuclear armed state – to eliminate its stockpile of weapons.

Tehran’s ambassador made these remarks during the Tenth Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) held at the UN’s headquarters in New York.

Takht-Ravanchi charged the US with exercising double standards, and demanded that Israel’s accession to the NPT “without precondition and further delay” and the placement of all of its nuclear activities and facilities under the comprehensive International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) safeguards are essential in “realizing the goal the of establishing of a nuclear-weapon-free zone in the Middle East.”

The Iranian envoy said delays in 2012, 2013 and 2014 in convening the Conference – which is meant to advance the goal of eliminating weapons of mass destruction from the region – had caused serious setbacks for participating states.

“We are firmly convinced that the Conference was postponed indefinitely because of the US opposition, and this has been the persistent policy of the US to turn a blind eye to the nuclear arsenals of the Israeli regime while not supporting the convening of the Conference,” he declared.

Israel reportedly possesses 200 to 400 nuclear warheads, making it the sole possessor of non-conventional arms in West Asia, yet Tel Aviv as yet to sign the NPT and refuses to allow inspections of its nuclear facilities.

Signatories from 191 countries have signed the NPT, including the US, UK, France, China, and Russia, making it the most highly ratified armaments agreement in history.

Experts suggest that the US and EU support for Israel has emboldened the country to increase its nuclear activities, despite essential oversight by the IAEA.

Over the years, Israelis are believed to have assassinated at least seven Iranian nuclear scientists and conducted a series of sabotage operations against Iran’s IAEA-monitored nuclear facilities.

Last week, Israeli officials called on western nations to “walk away” from the negotiating table with Iran, fearful that the US is on the cusp of returning to the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) that would freeze Tehran’s enrichment program.

During a phone call with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz on 18 August, Israel’s interim Prime Minister Yair Lapid demanded that Europe send a “clear and unequivocal message that there will be no more concessions to Iran,” according to Israeli media.

Lapid also met with the US ambassador to Israel and the chairman of the US House Foreign Affairs Committee’s ‘Middle East’ Subcommittee, telling them: “In the current situation, the time has come to walk away from the table. Anything else sends a message of weakness to Iran.”

This comes after several Israeli assassination and sabotage operations inside Iran, in efforts to set back Iran’s advancements and scuttle JCPOA revival talks.

August 23, 2022 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Militarism | , , , | 2 Comments

Mossad Likely Behind Salman Rushdie Stabbing: Denver Professor

Al-Manar | August 23, 2022

The last week’s stabbing of novelist Salman Rushdie, the author of a sacrilegious anti-Islam book may have been orchestrated by the Mossad, suggested Nader Hashemi, Director of the Center for Middle East Studies at the University of Denver.

In a Saturday interview with Negar Mortazavi, host of the Iran Podcast, Hashemi questioned the timing of the attack, highlighting what he believed to be two possible explanations.

Hashemi said that one possibility is that Iran wanted to take vengeance on the United States for the 2020 assassination of IRGC general Qassem Suleimani in a drone strike at Baghdad Airport.

Another possibility, Hashemi said, adding that he believes this is more likely, is that Rushdie’s attacker, Hadi Matar, had been convinced to commit the attack by a Mossad agent masquerading as an IRGC operative or supporter.

“That so-called person online claiming to be affiliated with the Islamic Republic of Iran could’ve been a Mossad operative.”

“The other possibility, which I actually think is much more likely, is that this young man Hadi Matar was in communication with someone online who claimed to be an Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps member or supporter and lured him into attacking Salman Rushdie and that so-called person online claiming to be affiliated with the Islamic Republic of Iran could’ve been a Mossad operative.”

Hashemi went on to suggest that the Zionist entity’s motive for carrying out a false flag operation would be to galvanize opposition to the ongoing efforts of world powers to revive the 2015 nuclear agreement.

“Israel has taken a very strong position against reviving the Iran nuclear agreement,” he said. “We were in very sensitive negotiations, like an agreement was imminent, and then the attack on Salman Rushdie takes place. I think that’s one possible interpretation and scenario that could explain the timing of this at this moment during these sensitive political discussions related to Iran’s nuclear program.”

August 23, 2022 Posted by | Deception, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, False Flag Terrorism | , , , | Leave a comment