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04 Aug 2018 17:30

Morer on Russia, CAR, dead journalists and diamonds -
https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-08-04/russia-in-africa-death-diamonds-and-intrigue
Back in March, the Russian Foreign Ministry reported that Russia was working with the government of Central African Republic President Faustin-Archange Touadera to explore the country’s natural resources on a concession basis. At the same time, the ministry said, Russia had sent weapons along with five military and 170 civilian instructors to train the nation's military forces. The African country, home to warring Christian and Muslim groups, is under a United Nations-imposed arms embargo, but Russia obtained an official dispensation, arguing that the weapons – 5,200 Kalashnikov submachine guns and smaller numbers of handguns, grenade launchers and other hardware – were for the UN-supported regime.

The mining concessions and the “civilian instructors,” however, appear to be more closely linked than the Foreign Ministry let on. Africa Intelligence, a Paris-based investigative and research outfit, reported in July that the government of the Central African Republic had begun extracting diamonds on an alluvial site not far from the capital, Bangui, with the help of a company called Lobaye Invest. The company, according to Africa Intelligence, is a subsidiary of the St. Petersburg firm M Invest, founded by Prigozhin. Africa Intelligence reported that Wagner fighters were delivering mining equipment to the site in armored trucks. At the same time, Touadera’s Russian advisers are helping the president negotiate a truce with various groups that used to be part of the Muslim rebel movement, Seleka.

This is a business model Wagner has reportedly used in Syria, where it lends its private troops to the regime of President Bashar Al-Assad, and in return receives a share of revenues from the oil wells and refineries the troops recover from regime opponents. In February, Wagner mercenaries clashed with U.S. troops while trying to seize a refinery and suffered major losses.

Like Syrian oil, Central African Republic diamonds are a commodity on which no ordinary business can get its hands. In the 1960s, the country exported half a million carats of diamonds a year, a volume that would make it the seventh-biggest exporter in the world today. Unlike neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo, which specializes in industrial diamonds, Central African Republic diamonds are mostly gem-quality. But the enormous economic potential of the industry was undermined by civil strife and government greed. A lot of diamonds are still extracted illegally and smuggled out of the country, and there’s a partial ban on diamond exports.

Another of the country's major resources is gold, and the three Russian reporters died while trying to drive out to a gold mine, apparently to check on Russian presence there. The circumstances of their death are still unclear: The driver of their vehicle, who survived, keeps changing his testimony. But even though the journalists didn’t live to tell their story, they were known well enough in Russia to turn attention to Wagner. Dzhemal was one of Russia’s top war reporters, known for his intrepid coverage of the Russian operation against Georgia in 2008 and the Libyan conflict of 2011, in which he nearly lost a leg. Rastorguev was a documentary filmmaker known for his bold experiments, which often included giving a camera to subjects to record their daily lives. He was one of the two creators of The Term, the essential documentary depiction of the 2011-2012 political protests in Russia.

Official Moscow was quick to deny any responsibility for the journalists’ death. Maria Zakharova, the Foreign Ministry spokeswoman, said they’d neglected the official channels, and pointed out that the presence of Russian “civilian instructors” in the Central African Republic was no secret. That, however, is probably disingenuous. There have been reports in the regional media that there are many more Russians in the Central African Republic than the 170 that the Foreign Ministry has mentioned. Nor has Russia admitted a connection between the “instructors” and mineral concessions.
"Are you going to believe me or what you see with your own eyes?"

“It doesn’t matter what I do. People need to hear what I have to say. There’s no one else who can say what I can say. It doesn’t matter what I live.”
User avatar Robert5091
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11 Aug 2018 16:28

in connection with the latest american pressure on turkey, erdogan today had said some crucial things that may or may not be reflective of his real intentions...frankly, i dont trust this dude yet he NEVER resorted to the verbal statements of this significance to the us built, dominated and, yes, manipulated military alliance...

'we may consider new friends and allies if the us treats us the way it does'...

who are the potential new fiends and allies ? the immediate logic suggests china and russia but may include ANY of the states currently under the american economic and trade warfare.

translated into plain english, he hinted at quitting the nato. it would be a big biggy. what's then ? we'll have to see, but i hope erdogan knows how to plan a couple of moves ahead.i am sure, the russian chess players are hard at work as i type.

to be frank, i'd find it refreshing if turkey banned the us from its country, the black sea and thus a huge chunk of the middle east.
----
i've been to a local music event and back and the post is still on the top...decided to add my latest thought.

very few in the us if ANYONE remember or know that the cuban missile crisis started with turkey. that is, because turkey succumbed to the us bullying of locating the american nukes aimed at russia on its territory. nikita decided to reciprocate in cuba and drove america nuts. this is a fact of history NOT taught in the freest of the freest public schools nor entertained in the freest of the freest media

such an option may NEVER upset russia anymore if the us behaves it does :rolleyes:
DJPbaltimore:'John Kerry is an honorable person and would not call out the Russians if there was not evidence', 'the 2 of you are russia stooges'
in foreign policy there are no eternal friendships or eternal enemies, only eternal interests
User avatar python
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14 Aug 2018 07:24

Only in South America - politics, cash and passion! (I feel a TV mini-series coming on ...)
https://www.axios.com/kirchner-in-court-over-notebooks-scandal-kickbacks-ebf9a82d-ae5a-4d65-b531-026a15415011.html
Former Argentinian President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner testified in court yesterday in relation to the biggest corruption scandal uncovered in years in her country, which could land her in prison.

Why it matters: Kirchner is accused of leading a criminal enterprise to steal hundreds of millions from public infrastructure contracts. She's the latest big name in Latin American politics to be implicated in a kickback scandal.

The scandal was exposed when Hilda Horowitz, the former lover of a driver tasked with transporting bags of cash from bribes paid by construction companies, told a judge about the operation after a sour break up.
The driver, Oscar Centeno, filled notebooks for years with details of every trip to pick up the money, which would eventually end up in the hands of people close to former president Néstor Kirchner, Kirchner’s deceased husband and predecessor.
The notebooks arrived secretly to the newsroom of La Nación, one of Argentina’s biggest newspapers, which confirmed the whole operation. Since then, most of the construction moguls involved have agreed to cooperate, hoping for lighter sentences.

Their information has exposed a massive operation where companies would fix public biddings with the government, charge far above market value, and illegally pay back a portion to public officials as bribes and for campaign funding.
"Are you going to believe me or what you see with your own eyes?"

“It doesn’t matter what I do. People need to hear what I have to say. There’s no one else who can say what I can say. It doesn’t matter what I live.”
User avatar Robert5091
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Re:

14 Aug 2018 07:29

python wrote:in connection with the latest american pressure on turkey, erdogan today had said some crucial things that may or may not be reflective of his real intentions...frankly, i dont trust this dude yet he NEVER resorted to the verbal statements of this significance to the us built, dominated and, yes, manipulated military alliance...

'we may consider new friends and allies if the us treats us the way it does'...

who are the potential new fiends and allies ? the immediate logic suggests china and russia but may include ANY of the states currently under the american economic and trade warfare.

translated into plain english, he hinted at quitting the nato. it would be a big biggy. what's then ? we'll have to see, but i hope erdogan knows how to plan a couple of moves ahead.i am sure, the russian chess players are hard at work as i type.

to be frank, i'd find it refreshing if turkey banned the us from its country, the black sea and thus a huge chunk of the middle east.
----
i've been to a local music event and back and the post is still on the top...decided to add my latest thought.

very few in the us if ANYONE remember or know that the cuban missile crisis started with turkey. that is, because turkey succumbed to the us bullying of locating the american nukes aimed at russia on its territory. nikita decided to reciprocate in cuba and drove america nuts. this is a fact of history NOT taught in the freest of the freest public schools nor entertained in the freest of the freest media

such an option may NEVER upset russia anymore if the us behaves it does :rolleyes:


The whole Cuba/Turkey "non-connection connection" described at https://nsarchive2.gwu.edu//nsa/cuba_mis_cri/moment.htm
"Are you going to believe me or what you see with your own eyes?"

“It doesn’t matter what I do. People need to hear what I have to say. There’s no one else who can say what I can say. It doesn’t matter what I live.”
User avatar Robert5091
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Re:

14 Aug 2018 14:42

[quote="[url=http://forum.cyclingnews.com/viewtopic.php?p=2301798#p2301798]python
who are the potential new fiends and allies ? the immediate logic suggests china and russia but may include ANY of the states currently under the american economic and trade warfare.

translated into plain english, he hinted at quitting the nato. it would be a big biggy. what's then ? we'll have to see, but i hope erdogan knows how to plan a couple of moves ahead.i am sure, the russian chess players are hard at work as i type.

to be frank, i'd find it refreshing if turkey banned the us from its country, the black sea and thus a huge chunk of the middle east.


All this over a revolutionary in a Turkish prison.

trump wants to do the same thing to those who oppose HIM on a daily basis in the US...

I wouldn't be a bit surprised Erdogan left NATO, snuggled up to Russia..told all US forces to pack their bags and get out. The map shows what a YUGE problem that would be for the US, considering Turkey's location and the middle east. The Black Sea would be even more a Russian 'lake'..
User avatar Bustedknuckle
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Yesterday 21:20

"US Proposes N. Korea Ship 50% of Warheads to UK"
http://world.kbs.co.kr/service/news_view.htm?lang=e&Seq_Code=138682


Reunions tomorrow for a small percentage of the separated families. So many of them dying off without ever getting to see their relatives again.
“She lost the old-fashioned way, by being a terrible candidate. Case closed.”
Beech Mtn
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