Autor: João

Italy and BRI

All roads Lead to Rome for Xi   Pepe Escobar Mar. 23, 2019 Italian PM Giuseppe Conte says the partnership on Belt and Road projects with China is strictly business   All (silk) roads do lead to Rome, as this Saturday Chinese President Xi Jinping and Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte will sign a memorandum to adhere to the New Silk Roads, or Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). Afterward, Xi becomes a magnanimous version of The Sicilian, visiting the port of Palermo, with Beijing intent on investing in local infrastructure. Atlanticist hysteria has been raging wildly – with the simplistic narrative focused on the fact that Italy is a G7 member, at the heart of the Mediterranean “mare nostrum”, and crammed with NATO bases. Thus, it cannot “sell out” to China. Conte and diplomats in Rome have confirmed that this is strictly about economic cooperation, and signing a memorandum is non-binding. Italy has, in fact, been informally aligned with the Belt and Road scheme since 2015 when it became one of the founding members of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), which finances scores of BRI projects. EU members Greece, Portugal and Malta have also signed BRI agreements. Berlin and Paris have not – at least not yet. Same with London, but post-Brexit that will inevitably happen as trade with China will become even more important for the UK. Here, in English and...

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NATO-OTAN and Brazil

Is NATO-OTAN Going South?   Tim Kirby Mar. 23, 2019   The North Atlantic Treaty Organization may be headed south, all the way down to Brazil. The President of Brazil Jair Bolsonaro, who in order to demonstrate his independent stance in the world decided to stop by CIA headquarters in Washington D.C. before having a chat with President Trump. This is very reminiscent of Ukraine’s Petro Poroshenko making sure US forces march on their “independence” day parade or when he has to meet visiting US counterparts on their boat of the coast of “his” country. Since the CIA is in many ways the king maker of Latin America this seems like an unwise PR choice unless he is very certain that foreign support is vastly more important than seeming to be an independent nationalist Brazilian figure like he claims to be. And speaking of Brazil’s independence, to the surprise of nearly everyone in the media, punditry and analysis sphere Trump said rather plainly that he “is seriously looking at NATO membership or some other formal alliance with Brazil”. This could obviously just be Trump’s loose lips and desire to be liked by the person sitting next to him and the latter of the two options could mean pretty much anything. “Formal alliance” is vague at best. The former of the two options, Brazil joining NATO, is much more tangible and thus is a far important...

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Crimea

The Geopolitical Jewel Russia Continues to Polish   Tom Luongo Mar. 20, 2019   With all that is happening in the world Crimea has taken a bit of a backseat recently. Yes, the US, EU and Canada just added more sanctions on Russia via the odious Magnitsky legislation but this is inconsequential. There’s been a flurry of good news coming out of Crimea and the Black Sea recently that bears discussion. Let’s start with the most important. President Vladimir Putin was in Crimea earlier this week to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the peninsula’s reunification with Russia. There he also officially inaugurated two major upgrades to Crimea’s power grid. Located in Simferopol and Sevastopol, two new power plants will produce 940 megawatts and secure Crimea’s energy needs for now and into the future. Power has been Crimea’s Achilles’ heel since breaking off from Ukraine in 2014. It received almost 90% of its power from the mainland. In November 2015, the trunk lines into Crimea were sabotaged by Ukrainian nationalist radicals, encouraged by President Petro Poroshenko plunging it into darkness as winter took hold. Does this sound familiar? A place that defies US edicts geopolitically is first hit with a full trade embargo, sanctions and threatened militarily by proxies before having its electricity shut off? *Cough* Venezuela *Cough* And there are reports that the US has game-planned a similar fate...

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Venezuela

Russia Gives US Red Line on Venezuela   Finian Cunningham Mar. 22, 2019   At a high-level meeting in Rome this week, it seems that Russia reiterated a grave warning to the US – Moscow will not tolerate American military intervention to topple the Venezuelan government with whom it is allied. Meanwhile, back in Washington DC, President Donald Trump was again bragging that the military option was still on the table, in his press conference with Brazilian counterpart Jair Bolsonaro. Trump is bluffing or not yet up to speed with being apprised of Russia’s red line. The meeting in the Italian capital between US “special envoy” on Venezuelan affairs Elliot Abrams and Russia’s deputy foreign minister Sergei Ryabkov had an air of urgency in its arrangement. The US State Department announced the tête-à-tête only three days beforehand. The two officials also reportedly held their two-hour discussions in a Rome hotel, a venue indicating ad hoc arrangement. Abrams is no ordinary diplomat. He is a regime-change specialist with a criminal record for sponsoring terrorist operations, specifically the infamous Iran-Contra affair to destabilize Nicaragua during the 1980s. His appointment by President Trump to the “Venezuela file” only underscores the serious intent in Washington for regime change in Caracas. Whether it gets away with that intent is another matter. Moscow’s interlocutor, Sergei Ryabkov, is known to not mince his words, having earlier castigated Washington for seeking global military...

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SI

Situação Internacional   João da Silveira     Seg. 18 PRESIDENTE BOLSONARO EM USAMÉRICA : TRUMP DOS TRÓPICOS VAI LIBERTAR O POVO VENEZUELANO : É claro que para libertar venezuelanos o Trump dos Trópicos vai contar com o apoio de Donald Trump… Olavo desconhece ideias políticas de Bolsonaro… Olavo contra Mourão… Paulo Guedes e Sergio Moro paparicaram Olavo… Heleno também paparicou… Enquanto isso no Brasil, Rodrigo Maia deixa o pacote de Moro para o segundo semestre… Carlos Bolsonaro desenvolve “linhas de produção” com deputados… Pesquisa do Ipespe mostra queda de Bolsonaro… As notícias ruins… E Samuel Pinheiro Guimarães divulga um vasto elenco de passos para acabar com projeto de país…   RÚSSIA : POLÍTICA EXTERNA E ESTRATÉGIA MILITAR : John Helmer compara as propostas de Alexei Kudrin (meet the US halfway), desacreditado, com a de Valeriy Gerasimov (fight the US all the way), acreditado….   Ter. 19 PRESIDENTE BOLSONARO EM USAMÉRICA : TRUMP DOS TRÓPICOS SE ABRE PARA DONALD TRUMP : Jair concorda com Donald sobre o muro… Jair isenta usamericanos de visto sem contrapartida… Jair assina acordo sobre uso da base de Alcântara pelos Estados Unidos… Sergio Moro assina acordo para troca de informação entre PF e FBI… Juntos, Trump e Bolsonaro celebram o ocaso do socialismo nas Américas… Acreditando “piamente” na reeleição de Trump, Bolsonaro o apoia em 2020 e não descarta intervenção na Venezuela socialista… O Antagonista divulga vídeo da...

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