August 21, 2014

SHOCK - "Imminent" danger of Jihadists infiltrating Greece, Claims Immigrants Union

Speaking to Real FM radio, a lawyer of a local Greek immigrants' union said on Thursday that Greece could be in danger of being infiltrated by Jihadists because of its close proximity to the Middle East.

More precisely, Ahmed Rashid, the lawyer of Greece's Kurdish Immigrants Union said that "because of Greece's geographic location, the danger is visible and imminent."

His comments, according to RealNews, follow a report in the Greek newspaper KontraNews which claims that British secret services (MI6) together with the Greek intelligence agency (KYP) have been placed on alert since there is a "secret jihadist network operating in Greece".

Asked about Kurds living in Greece, Rashid noted that they are not religious fanatics, stressing that they only "assimilate in the societies in which they immigrate".

Commenting on the matter a little later on, Athens deputy mayor George Apostolopoulos said that authorities can only estimate on the likelihood of such an occurrence, but nonetheless it is a subject that authorities should be concerned about.
     "These are just estimations and we cannot say something conclusively. But an international problem based on religious fanaticism could find its way into our country."
He said that the center of Athens is in a better position than it was 3-4 years ago, in terms of the number of illegal immigrants, but the flow of immigrant's to the city continues till today.
    "Also the city has dozens of unlicensed mosques where such activities might develop," he said adding there are about 100-120 illegal mosques operating in the city. 
The news did not come as a surprise to us here at HellasFrappe because we have been following the reports on Radical Islam Monitor in Southeast Europe which is published by geopolitical analyst Ioannis Michelatos who has been warning the Greek government -and the people of Greece- about such an event for quite a few years now.

On Thursday December 19, 2013 in an article titled "Southeast Europe 2014: Emerging Security Threats" Ioannis Michaletos stresses that:
     "More traditional forms of illegal immigration into Greece and other Balkan transit routes will continue to rise (om 2014) as Syria’s humanitarian worsens. Already more than 1 million Syrian citizens are in transit through Turkey to the EU, moving across the Balkans. Border controls are not able to withstand such pressure which comes both via land routes and sea routes. At the same time and in conjunction with the previous threat, an unknown number of jihadists from the Middle East enter the Balkans “hidden” within the refugee caravans. - Read more by clicking HERE
In a separate article that was published on Friday, August 5, 2011 and titled "Islam in Greece: Country outlook" Ioannis Michaletos says that since late 2008, there have been three major cases that show the tendency of creating a rising network of a quasi-radical Islamic element in the Greek society.
     "The first was in the December 2008 riots (34), were a large number of the people arrested were Pakistanis and Afghanis, some of them claiming to the authorities that were paid in order to participate in the violent demonstrations (35).
    "The second development was the May 2009 so-called “Koran demonstrations” (36), when a multicultural group of various Islamic communities in Athens took to the street allegedly claiming that the Police desecrated the Koran during a routine search in the pockets of a Syria street contraband vendor (37).
    "Bus stops, 5 shops, one bank and 57 cars, where smashed in and the city centre’s main squares and streets were turned into battle zones for hours. 46 immigrants were arrested, 7 immigrants and 7 police officers were wounded during the clashes (38).
    "It was later revealed that this particular individual was lying to the authorities and the press and was involved in various illegal actions including armed robberies (39).
    "A third phase was the mass prayer of thousands of Muslims in the centre of Athens in October 2010, without attaining the necessary state permission for that (40). Amongst the organizers they were individuals associated with the Muslim Brotherhood and an Imam was brought by Egypt to commemorate the ending of the Ramadan.
    "Small-scale riots started the next few days when they were again false allegations for Koran desecration by the Greek police in the centre of the city (41). It was again proved to be false, but it is more than obvious that a “street mechanism” is being established in the country that facilitates the mobilization of a few hundred “angry Muslims”, and the spread of these kind of news to the media through the use of Greek intermediates along with the umbrella of NGO’s that operate by spending considerable amounts of capital (42).  Read more on this by clicking HERE

BUSTED - ISIS: Region-wide Genocide Portended in 2007 Now Fully Realized

Image: ISIS' path into Iraq begins in NATO territory, north of Syria's borders in Turkey. This is where the majority of terrorists fighting for US-backed regime change in Syria have been admittedly harbored, armed, and financed by the US, British, Saudis, Qataris, and others for years. 
(Tony Cartalucci - LD) - American journalist James Wright Foley was allegedly brutally murdered on video by terrorists of the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq (ISIS). The development would at first appear to portray a terrorist organization openly declaring itself an enemy of the West, but in reality, it is the latest attempt by the West itself to cover up the true genesis of the current region-wide catastrophe of its own creation now unfolding in the Middle East.

As early as 2007, the stage was being set for the regional genocide now unfolding from Syria and Lebanon along the Mediterranean to northern Iraq. The "sudden" appearance of the Islamic State of Syria and Iraq, otherwise known as ISIS, betrays years of its rise and the central part it played in Western-backed violence seeking to overthrow the government of Syria starting in 2011 amid the cover of the so-called "Arab Spring."

While the "Free Syrian Army" brand was created and used to obfuscate the hardcore, sectarian extremism that pervaded mercenary forces raised against Damascus, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad had warned starting in 2011 that it was neither a pro-democratic uprising, nor a moderate, secular rebellion - but rather hordes of foreign-backed terrorists with ties to Al Qaeda.

The US State Department itself would admit that Al Qaeda's Syrian franchise, Jabhat al-Nusra (an offshoot of ISIS), was among the most prominent armed militant groups fighting the Syrian government, beginning in 2011 onward. The US State Department's official press statement titled, "Terrorist Designations of the al-Nusrah Front as an Alias for al-Qa'ida in Iraq," stated explicitly that:
    Since November 2011, al-Nusrah Front has claimed nearly 600 attacks – ranging from more than 40 suicide attacks to small arms and improvised explosive device operations – in major city centers including Damascus, Aleppo, Hamah, Dara, Homs, Idlib, and Dayr al-Zawr. During these attacks numerous innocent Syrians have been killed.
It was clear that the nationwide, extensive operations of al-Nusra were more than an apparition - instead they constituted the true nature of the armed conflict ravaging Syria - an armed enterprise that was clearly state-sponsored and the realization of long-laid plans by the West to reorder the region through chaos.

Rise of ISIS Portended in 2007

But even before 2011, analysts and journalists warned of an impending regional sectarian war being intentionally engineered by the United States, Saudi Arabia, Israel, and other regional partners. The goal was to undermine and overthrow the government of Iran by first using covert violence to eliminate its arc of influence from Baghdad to Damascus, and of course in Lebanon.

Image: The war in Syria was always against foreign-backed sectarian extremists - just as was warned by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in 2011. The reason why despite hundreds of millions of dollars in cash, weapons, and equipment flowing to "moderates," Al Qaeda has still managed to become the most prominent militant group now on both sides of the Syrian-Iraqi border, is because there were never any "moderates" to begin with. 
Veteran journalist and Pulitzer Prize-winner Seymour Hersh warned in a prophetic 2007 New Yorker article titled, "The Redirection Is the Administration’s new policy benefitting our enemies in the war on terrorism?" that (emphasis added):
    To undermine Iran, which is predominantly Shiite, the Bush Administration has decided, in effect, to reconfigure its priorities in the Middle East. In Lebanon, the Administration has coöperated with Saudi Arabia’s government, which is Sunni, in clandestine operations that are intended to weaken Hezbollah, the Shiite organization that is backed by Iran. The U.S. has also taken part in clandestine operations aimed at Iran and its ally Syria. A by-product of these activities has been the bolstering of Sunni extremist groups that espouse a militant vision of Islam and are hostile to America and sympathetic to Al Qaeda.
Also in Hersh's 2007 article, was mentioned ongoing support by the US, Saudi Arabia, and Israel to the Syrian Muslim Brotherhood for the purpose of creating the networks necessary to execute the coming violence that would be unleashed in 2011. He reported (emphasis added):
    There is evidence that the Administration’s redirection strategy has already benefitted the Brotherhood. The Syrian National Salvation Front is a coalition of opposition groups whose principal members are a faction led by Abdul Halim Khaddam, a former Syrian Vice-President who defected in 2005, and the Brotherhood. A former high-ranking C.I.A. officer told me, “The Americans have provided both political and financial support. The Saudis are taking the lead with financial support, but there is American involvement.” He said that Khaddam, who now lives in Paris, was getting money from Saudi Arabia, with the knowledge of the White House. (In 2005, a delegation of the Front’s members met with officials from the National Security Council, according to press reports.) A former White House official told me that the Saudis had provided members of the Front with travel documents.
Both the "Arab Spring" cover, and the networks of armed extremists were being built simultaneously in 2007, and unleashed in earnest in 2011 amid a regional political conflagration.
Image: Just as was predicted, the West's premeditated plan to arm and back sectarian extremists would cause regional genocide. Also predicted was that these targeted minorities would seek Hezbollah, Syrian, and Iranian protection. 
Hersh would also touch upon the coming sectarian nature of the West's designs, noting that even former CIA officers knew it would be precisely the Iranian arc of influence that would end up protecting religious minorities from the legions of terror the West was preparing to unleash. Hersh reported:
    Robert Baer, a former longtime C.I.A. agent in Lebanon, has been a severe critic of Hezbollah and has warned of its links to Iranian-sponsored terrorism. But now, he told me, “we’ve got Sunni Arabs preparing for cataclysmic conflict, and we will need somebody to protect the Christians in Lebanon. It used to be the French and the United States who would do it, and now it’s going to be Nasrallah and the Shiites.  
It would be difficult for anyone today to read Hersh's 2007 report and interpret as anything less than a verbatim outline of what the West had planned and now, since 2011, fully executed. It would also be difficult to claim that the regional presence of ISIS is not the full realization of the conflict Hersh warned the world of in 2007.

ISIS' Multinational Military Force the Product of Years of Western State-Sponsorship 

It is confirmed that since 2011, the United States, Turkey, France, the United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar have been heavily arming terrorists along both Syria's border with Turkey in the north and with Jordan in the south. While official speeches from behind podiums have expressed a reluctance to assist militants fighting in Syria, the presence of the militants are entirely a product of foreign backing.

Image: ISIS began its invasion into Iraqi territory from NATO-member Turkey, through Syria and riding in Toyota Hilux trucks - identical to those provided to "moderates" by the US State Department as part of multi-million dollar "non-lethal" aid packages. ISIS did not take these trucks from "moderates," the moderates never existed to begin with. From the beginning, it was the West's plan to raise a mercenary army of sectarian extremists operating under the banner of Al Qaeda.
In the Telegraph's 2013 article titled, "US and Europe in 'major airlift of arms to Syrian rebels through Zagreb'," it is reported:
    ...3,000 tons of weapons dating back to the former Yugoslavia have been sent in 75 planeloads from Zagreb airport to the rebels, largely via Jordan since November.
     The story confirmed the origins of ex-Yugoslav weapons seen in growing numbers in rebel hands in online videos, as described last month by The Daily Telegraph and other newspapers, but suggests far bigger quantities than previously suspected.
    The shipments were allegedly paid for by Saudi Arabia at the bidding of the United States, with assistance on supplying the weapons organised through Turkey and Jordan, Syria's neighbours. But the report added that as well as from Croatia, weapons came "from several other European countries including Britain", without specifying if they were British-supplied or British-procured arms.
    British military advisers however are known to be operating in countries bordering Syria alongside French and Americans, offering training to rebel leaders and former Syrian army officers. The Americans are also believed to be providing training on securing chemical weapons sites inside Syria.
Additionally, The New York Times in its article, "Arms Airlift to Syria Rebels Expands, With C.I.A. Aid," admits that:
    With help from the C.I.A., Arab governments and Turkey have sharply increased their military aid to Syria’s opposition fighters in recent months, expanding a secret airlift of arms and equipment for the uprising against President Bashar al-Assad, according to air traffic data, interviews with officials in several countries and the accounts of rebel commanders.
    The airlift, which began on a small scale in early 2012 and continued intermittently through last fall, expanded into a steady and much heavier flow late last year, the data shows. It has grown to include more than 160 military cargo flights by Jordanian, Saudi and Qatari military-style cargo planes landing at Esenboga Airport near Ankara, and, to a lesser degree, at other Turkish and Jordanian airports.
The US State Department had also announced it was sending hundreds of millions of dollars more in aid, equipment and even armored vehicles to militants operating in Syria, along with demands of its allies to "match" the funding to reach a goal of over a billion dollars. The NYT would report in their article, "Kerry Says U.S. Will Double Aid to Rebels in Syria," that:
    With the pledge of fresh aid, the total amount of nonlethal assistance from the United States to the coalition and civic groups inside the country is $250 million. During the meeting here, Mr. Kerry urged other nations to step up their assistance, with the objective of providing $1 billion in international aid.
The US has also admitted that it was officially arming and equipping terrorists inside of Syria. The Washington Post's article, "U.S. weapons reaching Syrian rebels," reported:
    The CIA has begun delivering weapons to rebels in Syria, ending months of delay in lethal aid that had been promised by the Obama administration, according to U.S. officials and Syrian figures. The shipments began streaming into the country over the past two weeks, along with separate deliveries by the State Department of vehicles and other gear — a flow of material that marks a major escalation of the U.S. role in Syria’s civil war.
More recently, scores of Toyota Hilux pick-up trucks were delivered to terrorists along the Turkish-Syrian border, which would later be seen among ISIS convoys invading northern Iraq. In a PRI report titled, "This one Toyota pickup truck is at the top of the shopping list for the Free Syrian Army — and the Taliban," it stated:
    Recently, when the US State Department resumed sending non-lethal aid to Syrian rebels, the delivery list included 43 Toyota trucks.
    Hiluxes were on the Free Syrian Army's wish list. Oubai Shahbander, a Washington-based advisor to the Syrian National Coalition, is a fan of the truck.
It is clear that ISIS did not materialize from sand dunes in Iraq's northern region, nor are they procuring immense armories of weaponry by picking Kalashnikovs from date trees. They are the visible materialization of years of material support openly reported by the Western media allegedly sent to "moderate rebels" who do not exist. If they did exist, there has been no plausible explanation to account for how ISIS has managed to procure more weapons, cash, fighters, and influence throughout the region than "moderates" receiving backing from the combined resources of the US, Europe, Turkey, the Saudis, Qataris, and Jordanians.

Image: American journalist James Wright Foley was allegedly beheadedby ISIS terrorists. Before his execution, a masked terrorists with a British accent threatened the US, the same US that in fact has created, armed, funded, directed, and to this day perpetuates ISIS' activities across the region. The depraved propaganda ploy is designed to create plausible deniability for the West, creating the illusion that ISIS and the US are enemies, not allies. 
Maintaining Plausible Deniability 

The logical conclusion to be drawn by those observing the last 3 years of immense funding, weapon deliveries, political, diplomatic, and even military training for terrorists fighting in Syria and now in Iraq, is that there were never any "moderates" to begin with. It was, as veteran journalist Seymour Hersh had warned in 2007, always sectarian extremists ideologically aligned with Al Qaeda that the West had planned to utilize against its enemies in the Middle East.

To deflect the general public from ever arriving at this obvious conclusion, a myriad of public relations ploys have been designed to portray ISIS not as the armed fist of Western hegemony in the Middle East, but a villain not only beyond its control, but posing as a direct threat to the West itself. Token bombing in northern Iraq and the arming of Kurds served dual purposes. The bombings made it appear that the US was fighting, not backing ISIS, while arming the Kurds helped further Balkanize Iraq as part of the classic hegemonic stratagem of "divide and conquer."

More recently, in what is obvious propaganda, American journalist James Wright Foley was allegedly abducted, then murdered on video by ISIS terrorists. Throughout the video, before the alleged execution, a man's voice, apparently the masked individual about to carry out the execution, speaks with a British accent, condemning the United States, threatening US President Barack Obama, and promising retaliation against the West.

Regardless of the veracity of the events portrayed in the video, the fact that it was created in the first place indicates a need by the West and those directly handling, arming, and funding ISIS' activities both in Syria and in Iraq, to create "distance" between the West and the ISIS mercenaries executing their foreign policy in their long-planned regional sectarian bloodbath. Videos like those featuring Foley, splashed sensationally across the front pages of Western websites and newspapers when US casualties in wars gone bad are otherwise buried, indicate a concerted propaganda campaign aimed at manipulating public perception, not honest, responsible reportage.

The predictable reaction of Americans is to recoil at ISIS' barbarism, despite similar barbarism being carried out for years in Syria and Iraq by Western-backed terrorists. With the apparent death of Foley, the US has created in the minds of many, plausible deniability regarding its well-documented role in the premeditated creation and continued perpetuation of ISIS. For Western special interests willing to lie to invade and occupy Iraq at the cost of over a million lives, including thousands of Americans, what would one more murdered American mean in an attempt to continue advancing its destructive, misanthropic agenda?

It should be remembered that Western designs in the Middle East are but one stage of a greater agenda. The reordering of the Middle East with immense standing armies of terrorists answering to Western dictates, will be used to move against Russia in the Caucasus region, and against China within and along the boundaries of Xinjiang province.

*Article and photos from Land Destroyer

GOOD - ND MPs Not To Vote For Anti-Racism Bill If Genocide Of Christians in East Is Not Included!

While being interviewed on Step 99.5 FM, and while being pressured to reveal whether or not he will vote on the widely-discussed (and controversial) anti-racism bill which is currently being promoted by the coalition government New Democracy MP Maximus Charakopoulos stated that the vote is based on common sense and those who have a conscious.

Charakopoulos who is one of 38 Conservative MPs sent a letter to Prime Minister Antonis Samaras to include the persecution and genocides of the Christian populations of Asia Minor in the new bill. The MPs (all Costa Karamanlis supporters) demanded that there be a specific reference to the genocide of Black Sea and Asia Minor Greeks, as well as Armenians and Assyrians.

It should be reminded that the Greek Parliament has already recognized these slaughters as genocide since 1994, therefore the exclusion of these provisions are against the law.

(But then again when did our leaders respect the law?)

Denying the occurrence of the genocide of all these Christians in the East is a crime by itself, but the Greek left (together with some foreign forces) have continued to push for this bill without these specific provisions.
     "If you believe that the denial of the Holocaust incites violence then you should be also hold the same belief for those who deny the Genocide of Christians in the East. "
He added that if the the Genocide of Christians in the East is not respected, recognized and penalized like the denial of the Holocaust is then for him it "is a matter of conscience" and he openly admitted that he will "not vote" in favor of this bill.

(Thank the heavens for specific MPs from the Karamanlis block who continue not to follow a "politically correct" ideology, that is more Venizelos-Simitis orientated, but rather continue to follow a common sense ideology!)

The anti-racism bill was first submitted to Parliament in November but objections from the former cabinet secretary Panayiotis Baltakos forced the coalition government to withdraw the would-be legislation. Following even more pressure from the socialists and the Left, the bill was then resubmitted to Parliament but did not move beyond the committee stages.

It should be noted that this bill has once again been introduced, in a revised form, and is currently being tabled in a bid to bring Greece’s anti-racism legislation, which has stood since 1979, up to date.

((In other words Greece has an anti-racism bill, but without the fines and with the recognition of these genocides! This upsets Ankara, and various Soros foundations who have worked feverishly via specific Leftist MPs -example Repoussi- to remove these tragedies from Greek life and/or history.  Greece's progressive and leftist forces know very well that this bill is sufficient enough, but they don't care and are only determined to force the government to pass a newer version of this bill -without the inclusion of the genocide of these christian minorities in the East- because they want to impress and win over the votes of the various non-Christian minorities across Greece).

The draft law includes provisions that mean parties or associations that promote racism are going to be cut off from state funding of any sort for one to six months. The Minister of Justice is also apparently going to have the right to slap hefty fines of 10,000-100,000 Euros against anyone who does not respect this law.

Also, anyone engaging in racist acts could be jailed anywhere from three months to three years and suffer fines of 5,000 to 20,000 Euros. If their actions lead to another crime being committed, this is then going to carry a minimum six-month prison sentences.

In simple terms, jail sentences will be given to anyone who praises and/or denies “the significance of genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes, the Holocaust and Nazism” in a manner that could incite racial hate or violence. If, for instance, the perpetrator is a government MP or a leading public official then the jail sentence is going to be even harsher, or between three and five years.

Reference in Greek - Pontos-News

To find out more on this story, then please also read:

HERE WE GO AGAIN - Gov't To Bring Anti-racism bill To Parliament

Anti-Racism Bill From Golden Dawn - To Fight Discrimination Against Greeks!

Kraounakis Slams Repousi - "Why Are You Attacking Our Roots B**otch" (VIDEO)

HALLELUJAH - State Scraps Anti-Racist Bill - Says It's Unconstitutional

SYRIZA, PASOK & DIMAR In Favor Of "Anti-Racism" Bill - Or Else... Turkey: In Full Support!

Orthodoxy Slowly Dying in Southeast Asia

Two Metropolises of Hong Kong in Far East and Singapore in South Asia are on the verge of a padlock!  One day after the celebration of Assumption throughout the country and wherever the Greek heart beats in churches, as Orthodox churches of Southeast Asia, people of these areas still ask for help.

What's going on?

After about ten years of service and creativity in 23 areas of the world both Metropolises, in Hong Kong and in Singapore, are a crucial step before the padlock, which will ruin the great work of two major pockets of Orthodoxy in this corner of the planet. "Help us to survive" is the first message that reads whoever visits the page of Metropolis of Hong Kong, which belongs to the Ecumenical Patriarchate. With dozens of unpaid clergy, the institutions can't feed the needy of God, as orphans and charitable programs are closed one after the other. The situation is dramatic.

This trend is worrying, if you count the fact that both were established in the place where there were old Greek and other Orthodox communities. Until recently, the donations could sustain 15 schools, 10 hospitals, five orphanages and boarding schools. They distributed food and medicine to needy, trained people on how to cultivate the land and gave scholarships to needy students. These children would have this chance otherwise. And we wonder why nobody supports the important work of this charity? Is it the lack of money due to the economic crisis? Where are Greek shipowners to support this effort? Where is their sensitivity? Or are limited to various "gala" and cosmic events with sushi and champagne?

"The risk for reduction of the Orthodox Church relates to the countries Pakistan, India, Singapore, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Philippines. We appeal to all the missionary societies and all Orthodox Cathedrals in Greece, Australia and US to support the two Cathedrals in East Asia" we read in the call of the people of these two cities. We mention that in Pakistan there is a small Orthodox Community in Lahore.

Already for four years, they organize workshops for illiterate women and technical education programs for disadvantaged children. Since 2005 the charity The Orthodox Mission in Pakistan was founded and is officially recognized by the state of Pakistan.


OPINION - Ukraine Crisis Continues - West Still Hasn't Produced Evidence on Malaysian flight 17

Having served Washington’s propaganda purposes, the downed Malaysian airliner and the alleged Russian armored column that entered Ukraine and was allegedly destroyed have dropped out of the news even though both stories remain completely and totally unresolved, says Dr. Paul Craig Roberts in his latest article (Source HERE).

Roberts, who was Assistant Secretary for the United States Treasury for Economic Policy as well as associate editor of the Wall Street Journal, notes that Washington’s stooge government in Ukraine has not released the records of communications between Ukrainian air traffic control and Malaysian flight 17, and Washington has not released the photos from its satellite which was directly overhead at the time of the airliner’s demise.
    "We can safely and conclusively conclude from this purposeful withholding of evidence that the evidence does not support Washington’s and Kiev’s propaganda.
    "We can also safely and conclusively conclude that the Western media’s sudden disinterest in the unresolved story and failure to demand the evidence kept secret by Washington and Kiev is in keeping with the Western media’s role as a Ministry of Propaganda.
In other words, Roberts says that Washington and its presstitutes are protecting the lie that the US and its "media vassals" successfully spread around the world and have used as the basis for further sanctions that escalate the conflict with Russia.
     "Washington could not possibly make it clearer that Washington intends to escalate, not defuse, the conflict that Washington alone orchestrated.
     "Ditto for the alleged Russian armored column. The Russian government has labeled the story a fantasy, which it clearly is, but nevertheless Washington and its media vassals have left the story in place.
He claims that since English is the world language and as the European press follows the lead of the American presstitutes, the propaganda war is stacked against Russia (and China).
     "Russian and Chinese are not world languages. Indeed, these languages are difficult for others to learn and are not well known outside the countries themselves. The Western media follows Washington’s lead, not Moscow’s or Beijing’s.
     "As facts are not relevant to the outcome, Moscow and Beijing are in a losing situation in the propaganda war.
     "The same holds for diplomacy. Washington does not engage in diplomacy. The exceptional country uses bribes, threats, and coercion. The Russian government’s diplomatic efforts come to naught. As Russian President Putin has complained, “Washington doesn’t listen, the West doesn’t hear us.”
     "And yet the Russian government continues to try to deal with the Ukrainian situation with facts and diplomacy.
This approach, adds Roberts, is proving to be very costly to the residents of the former Russian territories in eastern and southern Ukraine.
     "These people are being killed by air and artillery strikes against their homes and infrastructure. Large numbers of these people have been displaced by the Ukrainian attacks and are refugees in Russia. The Western media does not report the violence that Washington’s stooge government in Kiev is inflicting on these people. The Western media speaks only with Washington’s voice: “It is all Russia’s fault.”
He believes that the crisis would have been prevented if the Russian government had accepted the provinces request to be reunited with Russia as in the case of Crimea. However, the Russian government decided to avoid any decision that Washington could misrepresent as “invasion and annexation,” thinking that Europe would see Russia’s unprovocative behavior as reassuring and resist Washington’s pressure to enter into conflict with Russia.
     "In my opinion the Russian government over-estimated the power of diplomacy in the West. Washington is interested in fomenting crises, not in resolving them.
     "In the 23 years since the collapse of the Soviet Union, many Russians have been of the opinion that Washington, not the Soviet government, was the party to be trusted in the Cold War. What the Russian government has learned recently is that Washington cannot be trusted and that the Soviet government’s suspicions of the West were very well founded.
     "Kiev’s military assault on eastern and southern Ukraine is not going to stop because Europeans finally see the light and object. Europeans not only stood aside for 13 years while Washington bombed civilians in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Pakistan, Yemen, and organized outside forces to attack Syrians, while isolating Iran for military attack, but also actively participated in the attacks. Europe has stood aside while Israel has massacred Palestinians on numerous occasions.
For Russia to rely on Europe’s moral conscience, says Roberts, is to rely on something that does not exist.
     "The continued slaughter and destruction of the Russian populations in eastern and southern Ukraine will eventually demoralize the Russian people and undermine their support of Putin’s government for failing to halt it. The Russian government’s acceptance of the slaughter makes Russia look weak and encourages more aggression against Russia.
     "If the Russian government intends to resolve its problems in Ukraine and to forestall Washington’s ability to further erode Russia’s political and economic relationships with Europe with more sanctions, the Russian government will have to turn to more forceful measures.
He then proposes two alternatives:
     "In Ukraine the Russian government has two alternatives. One is to announce that the ongoing slaughter and the unresponsiveness of Kiev and its Western backers to Russia’s efforts to end the killing with a diplomatic settlement has caused Russia to reconsider the provinces’ requests to be reunited with Russia and that any further attacks on these territories will be regarded as attacks on Russia and be met with a devastating military response.
     "The other alternative is for Putin to meet privately with Washington’s stooge and convey to the corrupt oligarch that enough is enough and that if the attacks continue Russia will accept the requests for reunification and protect the provinces. Putin would explain to Washington’s stooge that if he wants to retain the former Russian territories as part of Ukraine, he will have to work out satisfactory arrangements with the provinces. In other words, Putin would deliver an ultimatum, one that required an immediate answer so that the stooge couldn’t run to Washington and Washington would not have time to create a new propaganda.
Roberts, who was also a columnist for Business Week, Scripps Howard News Service, and Creators Syndicate, says that Karl Marx regarded morality as a rationale for class interests. As each class created a morality to justify its interests, there was no basis for good will between people. With reform impossible, violence becomes the only effective method of change.
     "Washington has its own version of Marx’s doctrine. As the exceptional country, history has chosen the US to prevail over other countries’ interests. Prevailing rules out diplomacy which requires compromise. Therefore, Washington, like Marx, relies on violence.
     "The Russian government cannot rely on diplomacy and good will if the West is relying on violence.
     "Perhaps a solution could be found by President Putin meeting separately with Merkel and Hollande and explaining that Russia cannot indefinitely accept sanctions based on lies and propaganda without taking more determined steps than Russian sanctions against European agricultural products. Putin could make it clear that if Europe continues to accommodate Washington’s assault on Russia, the flow of energy could be restricted or be turned off.
     "Additionally, President Putin might explain to the European leaders that the dynamics of Washington’s campaign to demonize Russia can escape control and result in war that would devastate Europe. Putin could tell Europeans that by disassociating from Washington’s foreign policy and adopting foreign policies that serve their own interests instead of Washington’s, Europeans have nothing to lose but their chains of vassalage.
He says that Putin can use this meeting to explain to Brussels that Moscow is prepared to guarantee its security.
     "Putin could explain to Europeans that Russia is prepared to guarantee Europe’s security and, therefore, that Europe does not need Washington’s guarantee against a nonexistent Russian threat.
     "If this very reasonable and diplomatic approach to Europe fails, then Russia and China know that they must prepare for war."
About the Author - . He has had many university appointments. His Internet columns have attracted a worldwide following. Roberts' latest books are The Failure of Laissez Faire Capitalism and Economic Dissolution of the West and How America Was Lost. Visit his website at

August 20, 2014

A Tribute To Mike - Annual Memorial

Today marks the first anniversary of the death of my beloved Mike. He died on August 20th, 2013 at 08.40 am after suffering with a severe case of pancreatic cancer.

In my first tribute to Mike, which was written on the morning of his passing, I shared my experiences with friends and colleagues and was deeply touched that my words had a profound effect on others dealing with the death of their own loved ones.

His father, brother and I miss him terribly but want to continue to honor his outgoing spirit and compassion for humanity by encouraging you all to read this article. No, it will not talk about Mike, or how great he was (because this is clearly noted in the About Us section of this blog), but aims to help all of those who have (are) suffered (ing) some type of loss.

Over the past year, Mike's death has not only been had a profound spiritual journey for me, but also directly affected this blog. There were days when I couldn't be productive, and the blog suffered. Traffic declined, donations were (are) at ZERO and the blog began to become too much for me to maintain.

You see, man never gets over the loss of a loved one and although every one grieves in their own way, and at their own time, my grief evolved into a deep depression. Oh I posted my articles as usual, but there were days that I could not even flick on the computer.

And this is because on the morning when he passed, my heart, spirit and zest for life went with him. I felt as if I had completely lost my present and any potential future. The nights became sleepless and lonely, the days became meaningless and colorless and the weeks that followed were empty and had no purpose.

I had no motivation or incentive to do the slightest things and all I wanted to do was be alone, sleep and ask God why.

You see, with his passing, I was abruptly thrust in to a different, unfamiliar world.

In the first few days and weeks all I felt was numbness and was in complete denial. About two months down the road the anger and the yearning of his presence set in and I was not a pleasant person to be around with. Following this I was in emotional despair and withdrew myself from everyone and everything. In fact I travelled to Canada to be with my family during this stage but these emotions were so intense and the sadness was so great that I even shut them out and went off on my own.

That stage has made its circle now, and now I am at the point of reorganizing my life. I know that the next phase will be letting go, but as I said earlier grief does not have a time limit and does not follow any rules. So letting go, will only come when I will fall in love again.

Besides, I still miss his physical presence and I am just learning to connect with him spiritually.

Everything I learned all these months and practiced was in my face as I experienced the roller coaster ride of raw grief following my his tragic death. I found writing my thoughts and feelings in this blog helped me to deal with the reality and emotions of death which at times overwhelmed me. Continuing to want to save the world -as we had both set out to do- gave me a purpose. It also allowed Mike's presence to be preserved.

The depression was more diabolical. You see, grief is something everyone will encounter in his or her life. As with all of us that have been through it, people in my life spoke up with what I “needed to do.” No one though had any solid answers. And this is where it gets funny. When you are grieving that is all you want. Answers!

All of the advice that was given to me by good friends and even some of HellasFrappe's fans had a place in my finding my way forward, but it was not enough.

This is because I concentrated more on the memories. Thoughts of the past held me spellbound, because they were all I had left. I kept asking myself, how do I breath without him, how do I take that next step without him? I didn't want to go on and literally believed that it was easier to just lay down and die.

The biggest heartache of all was the "not knowing" where Mike went to. Is there a heaven? Is there a God? Is there an afterlife? The unknown became, and has become, my worse enemy.

All this forced me to shut down emotionally and destroyed many important relationships in my life because I chose to stop feeling.

The worse part of my depression was that I didn't even notice that my own health declined.

Aside from the physical symptoms, the blog also suffered. I was not able to write, HellasFrappe's finances worsened and traffic fell by more than 50 percent. During those months, the only thing that preoccupied my mind was why him? Why did he have to die? If only I had gotten there sooner. If only someone did something differently. If only this, if only that.

No, I was not going mad, but in a stage of deep, deep grief. When pain rules, grief brings bitterness, resentment and often isolation and it affects everything. Your health is affected, finances and your relationships with everyone are also affected. It is actually exhausting and draining because it uses up all of your reserves physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually. You cannot concentrate, you cannot work and being around people feels like running up a mountain.

I was fortunate though, Mary was there, patient with so much unconditional love for me and she refused to see me give up. Being the stubborn woman she is, she did not want to see me wither and fade away. She advised me to stop suppressing my feelings and encouraged me to cry and let my tears flow openly. This frightened others and made them feel uncomfortable around me, but it was warmly welcomed by Mary.

She told me that tears were a necessity, and crying was and is unavoidable. During those moments, I allowed the grief to pour out. Yelling and screaming at the universe -and at everyone- became one of my favorite pastimes.

It was a whirlpool of sadness that threatened to suck me under its waves to a depth of despondency where I could have never resurfaced again, but Mary was patient, and knew when to hold out her hand and help me back up to the surface.

She was a God send.

Her unconditional love for me allowed each emotional storm to pass and I came out a survivor.

She, and several other important people in my life, accepted my baby steps theory, and in no time I began to feel better and began to get stronger.

I just kept telling myself, I will not allow myself to get trapped further and further in this dark world. I need to heal. And slowly I did.

I finally convinced myself that although I will carry this loss forever, how I choose to carry it will determine my own quality of life.

Today, I don't question if I can do this, if I can go on, for I am going on and didn't even notice. The depression is a thing of the past.

HellasFrappe helped, keeping myself busy helped, getting back on track health wise also helped, but do not let this fool you, I do not go without him. Mike is and will always be in my heart every moment, and every breath of the way.

I am simply at a higher level of seeing what I did not see prior to (and after) his passing. In this higher emotional state I see the world differently and feel differently about everyone and everything.

How did I get to this level?

Well it came all at once.

I simply shifted my perspective in taking care of myself (physically, financially, spiritually) and in no time the clouds began to disappear.

This is what Mike would have wanted for me.

It took me a long time to realize this, but he sent me a loud message at his one year memorial.

During the service, a white pigeon came and sat on the headstone of his grave just as the priest was getting ready to end the liturgy. The bird stared directly at me and would not move. Mike's father and brother attempted to scare it away, but it refused to move.

This unprecedented experience had a profound effect on me both emotionally and spiritually. At that moment I was in a daze over my need to reorganize my life and move forward and my grief for Mike.

I felt as though the presence of the bird was Mike's way of telling me it is time to go forward.

This made me erupt like a volcano. I wept hysterically. I went into a frenzy and thrust my hands in the air asking why.

And throughout this whole hysteria the bird would not budge, it continued to stare at me directly.

It was almost like Mike had descended and was telling not to be afraid of being happy once again.

All this time, this was my biggest fear. I was finally okay with the reorganizing my life step, and the moving forward step but I continued to feel that if I allowed myself to once again be happy then I would be betraying his memory. Somehow the bird -or Mike's spirit- made me realize that I would never betray what I feel for him because it is too strong, too unique and too powerful.

His presence was just the validation to finally move forward.

This was my journey into the land of grief, and these are lessons we can all learn from; the stories that just feel larger than all of us. I wanted this story to be told, because I know that there are many out there who will identify with every word I said.

I hope that by sharing this personal experience I can preserve Mike's life story and valuable memories for his friends and family. And at the same time be a comfort to anyone who has ever suffered loss.

After all, Mike's life has a story that can contribute to a larger population because he committed his last few years in informing the Greek Diaspora about the crisis, was a victim of it because of his cancer, but never stopped motivating me into bringing this all together in this blog.

I feel so privileged to have known him and to have loved him. I am also content in knowing that I have preserved his memory and given a voice to someone whom none of you knew.

I am also grateful to Mary Pehlavanian for not allowing me to lose myself after his loss. My Frappers, my family and my other friends also helped, but Mary bit the bullets and for this I will forever be grateful.

I may be closing the chapter titled Mike in my life but this is only to allow me to go on. Aside from filling every void in my heart, I learned many things from my 8+ years with him about love, understanding, compassion, and forgiveness. Because of this, -no matter the circumstance- I will continue to honor him every August 20th until my very last breath.

Rest in peace agapi mou... You will never be forgotten, I will make sure of that.

Thank you all for sharing this with me
Much Love
Marina Spanos

*Please make a donation to HellasFrappe by clicking on the donate button below. HellasFrappe will use a percentage of these funds to donate towards cancer research in loving memory of Mike. If not, then please make a donation to your local cancer research foundation and help them to save more lives in future. Thank you.

August 19, 2014

Tsatoumas Awarded Silver in Long Jump at European Games

Prime Minister Antonis Samaras and Foreign Minister Evangelos Venizelos on Monday congratulated Louis Tsatoumas who was awarded a silver medal in the long jump at the European Championships which are being held in Zurich, Switzerland. The Greek champion reached 8.15m in his first attempt just behind British Greg Rutherford, who reached 8.29m.

He won his first major senior medal in 2007 at the European Indoor Athletics Championships, where he claimed the silver medal behind an Italian record-breaking Andrew Howe. On June 2nd, 2007 in Kalamata Tsatoumas jumped 8.66 metres, achieving a personal best and a Greek record for the event. The performance was the best in the world since Iván Pedroso leaped 8.70 m to win the gold medal at the 1995 World Championships. Tsatoumas ranks as the eighth best long jumper in history and holds the European record in the event at low altitude.

According to Wikipedia, at the 2008 Olympics he had the longest qualifying jump with 8.27m, but after three consecutive fouls in the final he finished in last place. He was the bronze medallist at both the 2009 Mediterranean Games and 2009 European Team Championships.

He represented Greece at the 2009 World Championships in Athletics, reaching the final round, but finished only eleventh overall. At the 2010 European Athletics Championships he was sixth.

Earlier in 2014 Tsatoumas set a Greek indoor record of 8.23m to win the national indoor title.

Moscow May Consider More Measures If West Continues With Sanctions

(RIA Novosti) – Moscow will consider additional protective measures if the West continues its destructive sanction policy, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Tuesday.

"Different variants are being developed. We have said several times that Russia is not a fan of speaking in terms of sanctions and has not been an initiator. But if our partners continue their non-constructive and even destructive practices, then additional measures will be developed," Peskov said.

The first round of sanctions against Russia was implemented by the United States and the European Union back in March as a response to Crimea’s reunification with Russia following a referendum. As the Ukrainian crisis escalated, Switzerland, Canada, Australia and Japan gave in to US pressure and drew up their own sanctions.

In response to Western sanctions, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed an order on economic measures to protect the country’s security. The decree went into effect on August 7 and banned the imports of agricultural and food products from the countries that had imposed sanctions on Russia for one year. The list of banned products includes meat, poultry, fish, seafood, milk, dairy products, fruits and vegetables.

Moscow said earlier it was ready to review the terms of its import restrictions if its Western partners showed a commitment to dialogue.

PROVOCATION - German Media Purposely Published Falsifications To Negatively Stereotype Greeks

A yearlong study from the University of Erfurt shows that the Greek economic crisis unearthed many negative stereotypes in the German media, which in return aimed to sway public sympathy away from Greece and its people. The study was conducted by six students, under the guidance of Dr. Kai Hafez.

According to the results,(featured by Deutsche Welle), the German media was not only prejudice in its portrayal of Greeks, but it also used image-characterizations such as “debt-struck Greeks”, “lazy Greeks”, “tax evaders”, and other similar descriptions to sway public opinion so that it does not sympathize with the austerity that was slapped on the Greek people. This is not alarming to citizens in Greece, because everyone more or less knows how the mainstream media works, but it is insulting nonetheless.

Greek citizens also know that there were many other nations across Europe that also echoed the same type of criticism, and quite shockingly so did the Greek Diaspora in North America and Australia.

The worse part was that these image-characterizations weren’t only used by tabloid newspapers such as BILD, but were also noted by other more prominent newspapers and publications, adds the study.

It even notes that BILD not only published false information, it also purposely aimed to influence public opinion (to turn its back on Greece and its people). Those who didn't take BILD seriously were not affected at first, but soonafter these stereotypes had a domino effect throughout the German press.

We are certain that most Frappers remember the insulting front covers of FOCUS magazine.

Basically, the study proved what we here at HellasFrappe have been saying all along. Citizens, in this case Germans, were purposely brainwashed into believing that Greeks, regardless of their age or educational level, are rightfully paying the price for living beyond their means.

Dr. Hafez believes that the German media is to blame for the misconceptions held by Germans and their opinion that wrong financial handling is reflective of Greek people’s nature.

Battling Against the Convert To Islam or Die Caliphate in Iraq

All over the world, millions of innocent people are facing persecution, imprisonment, and even death because of their religious beliefs.

In 2013, the world witnessed the largest displacement of religious communities in recent memory, according to the State Department's Annual Report on International Religious Freedom. And the trend in 2014 is only getting worse.

But perhaps nowhere has intolerance, ruthlessness, and evil combined to destroy people of faith more than it has in Iraq, where the Islamic State is engaged in a systemic effort to wipe out the Christian presence there, along with all other religious minorities. The Islamic State, an extreme Sunni militant group that emerged from al-Qaeda, has rampaged across Iraq, ridding towns of Christians and other religious minorities, just as it did in parts of Syria over the last year, persecuting that country's Christians. It has used brutal tactics such as beheadings, rapes, forced conversions, and forced marriages of any non-Sunnis in its path.

The United States intervened militarily to assist 40,000 Iraqi Yazidis -- a religion that fuses Christianity, Islam, and ancient Zoroastrianism -- who were literally stuck on a mountaintop. Until U.S. and Kurdish military operations helped clear a path to safety, their options were to stay and die of thirst, or relocate and be massacred by the Islamic State militants waiting at the base of the mountain.

The U.S. government took the correct action in halting the genocidal campaign of the Islamic State by using our military to perform limited air strikes against their positions that were threatening Mount Sinjar and by conducting humanitarian airdrops to the Yazidis who were facing death from lack of water. Although the Obama administration has indicated that the mission has been accomplished on Mount Sinjar, there are reports that thousands of Yazidis still remain in peril on the mountain, in addition to the hundreds of thousands of refugees who need of humanitarian assistance in the Kurdish region of Iraq.

Although the Mount Sinjar crisis further revealed to the world the sheer brutality of the Islamic State, for months these terrorists have been occupying and destroying churches across Iraq, pulling down crosses, destroying religious documents and holy sites, and forcing Christians to convert or face death. They have seized bridges, dams, and other infrastructure that Christian towns and communities rely on for survival. Christians have been the primary target in Iraq, raising the stakes and the need for U.S. leadership. Christians have inhabited Iraq and Syria for 2,000 years; but if the Islamic State has its way with its "convert or die" tactics, not a single Christian will be left.

But it is important not to lose sight of the fact that it is not just the fate of Christians and other religious minorities at stake in Iraq and Syria. Allowing the Islamic State and its jihadist leaders to maintain their newly established caliphate in the heart of the Middle East is a national-security threat to the United States and to our allies in the region.

We need to be doing much more to address this challenge, including air strikes against Islamic State targets and increased lethal assistance to the Kurds and Iraq's central government. The Kurds in particular are hosting more than a million refugees from other parts of Iraq and Syria who have fled their villages as the jihadists have advanced. They are short on funds and resources because of ongoing disputes with the government in Baghdad, and we need to be more responsive to their requests for direct financial and military aid.

In Iraq and around the world, protecting religious freedom must be a top priority of our foreign-policy agenda. One need look no further than the situation we face in Iraq and Syria today to realize that, if left unchecked, the same forces that breed anti-religious extremism will eventually affect our security here at home.

Marco Rubio represents Florida in the U.S. Senate and is a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and Senate Select Intelligence Committee.


ANALYSIS - What The World Bank Actually Does (VIDEOS)

By James Corbett (Global Research) - As many have heard by now, the leaders of the so-called BRICS nations – Brazil, India, China, Russia and South Africa – used the occasion of the 6th BRICS Summit in Brasilia, Brazil to announce the creation of the long-awaited BRICS Development Bank.

Formally the “New Development Bank,” it will be based in Shanghai and capitalized with an initial $10 billion in cash ($2 billion from each of the five founding members) and $40 billion in guarantees, to be built up to a total of $100 billion.

Immediately, the press began touting the new bank as a potential rival to the current IMF / World Bank system of infrastructure development and poverty reduction in the third world. “BRICS Development Bank Could Challenge World Bank and IMF” touts US News & World Report. “BRICS Ink $50 Billion Lender in World Bank, IMF Challenge” asserts Bloomberg. The World Bank, for its part, is downplaying the rivalry, with World Bank President Jim Young Kim openly welcoming the bank at a recent meeting with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. “The only competition we have is with poverty,” he told reporters at the meeting.

But all of this talk about a potential rival to the IMF and World Bank have exposed the general public’s ignorance about what exactly these institutions are and what they do. While most are familiar with the IMF and its predatory lending practices (and those who aren’t are encouraged to acquaint themselves with the “IMF riot” strategy that was developed in the third world and is now being imported to Europe), the World Bank is less scrutinized and less well understood. What is it, what does it do, and why is it important for the BRICS to challenge its hegemony in the development and poverty reduction arenas?

For the answer to that, we’ll need to examine the World Bank’s history, both the official history that it touts to the outside world and the real history of its part in plundering the developing world that it is supposedly there to help.

Formally the “New Development Bank,” it will be based in Shanghai and capitalized with an initial $10 billion in cash ($2 billion from each of the five founding members) and $40 billion in guarantees, to be built up to a total of $100 billion.

Immediately, the press began touting the new bank as a potential rival to the current IMF / World Bank system of infrastructure development and poverty reduction in the third world. “BRICS Development Bank Could Challenge World Bank and IMF” touts US News & World Report. “BRICS Ink $50 Billion Lender in World Bank, IMF Challenge” asserts Bloomberg. The World Bank, for its part, is downplaying the rivalry, with World Bank President Jim Young Kim openly welcoming the bank at a recent meeting with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. “The only competition we have is with poverty,” he told reporters at the meeting.

But all of this talk about a potential rival to the IMF and World Bank have exposed the general public’s ignorance about what exactly these institutions are and what they do. While most are familiar with the IMF and its predatory lending practices (and those who aren’t are encouraged to acquaint themselves with the “IMF riot” strategy that was developed in the third world and is now being imported to Europe), the World Bank is less scrutinized and less well understood. What is it, what does it do, and why is it important for the BRICS to challenge its hegemony in the development and poverty reduction arenas?

For the answer to that, we’ll need to examine the World Bank’s history, both the official history that it touts to the outside world and the real history of its part in plundering the developing world that it is supposedly there to help.

The Official Story

The World Bank was born along with the IMF at the 1944 Bretton Woods conference that decided on the financial architecture of the post-WWII world, only at that time it was known as the “International Bank for Reconstruction and Development” and was concerned primarily with post-war reconstruction of Europe. After the implementation of the Marshall Plan in 1947, however, its focus shifted to the non-European world where it provided development loans targeted at helping developing countries create income-generating infrastructure (power plants, seaports, highways, etc.).

From the very beginning there has been question about the overlap of the IMF and World Bank’s respective roles. Both are committed, according to the IMF website, to “raising living standards in their member countries,” but the IMF is financial in nature, concentrating on short and medium-term loans to help countries meet balance of payment needs , while the World Bank is fundamentally a development institution, focusing on technical and financial support for specific projects or sectoral reforms. Part of the confusion is linguistic; at the first ever meeting meeting of the IMF the “father” of Bretton Woods, John Maynard Keynes (who else?), confessed he thought the Fund should be called a bank and the Bank should be called a fund. Nevertheless, the monikers have stuck and the World Bank and IMF continue to talk the talk of global infrastructure development and poverty reduction.

Since the World Bank pivoted away from Europe to concentrate on the developing world in the late 1940s, it has lent more than $330 billion on infrastructure development projects. It currently boasts $232.8 billion in total subscribed capital, overseeing $358.9 billion in total assets. The World Bank concentrates its lending on creditworthy governments of developing nations, and splits its lending activities between the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) and the International Development Association (IDA). The IBRD generally provides 12-15 year loans at slightly above market rates to countries with per capita GDPs above $1305. The IDA, meanwhile, provides interest-free 35 to 40 year loans to countries with per capita GDPs below the $1305 mark.

Unlike the IMF, which is funded by quota subscriptions from member countries, the World Bank finances its lending by borrowing on the international bond market. As a result, for the first decades of its existence the World Bank was concerned with building up its reputation as a lender and establishing its own creditworthiness. Until 1968, the Bank was a relatively small institution with less than 1000 employees concentrated in Washington that concerned itself almost exclusively with loans designed to finance transportation and energy infrastructure projects.

When JFK/LBJ Secretary of Defense and unconvicted war criminal Robert McNamara took over as president in 1968, however, he began a radical repositioning of the Bank and transformation of its aim, scope and practices. Over his 12 years at the helm of the Bank, McNamara greatly expanded its lending activities, shifting the aim of that lending toward agricultural reform and literacy initiatives, as well as the building of schools and hospitals. During this period the Bank’s treasurer, Eugene Rotberg, increased the Bank’s capital by going beyond the established developed world banks that had been its primary funding source and tapping into the global bond market. In the 1980s the bank began to press so-called “Structural Adjustment Policies” on loan recipients, including mandates to devalue currencies or reduce government spending in various areas, as pre-conditions for lending. The Bank also began providing lending to help governments service the debts they had racked up in previous rounds of lending.

After the Bank came under increasing scrutiny (and protest) in the 1990s and early 2000s, it has adjusted its policies and practices to address its critics. It now touts environmental responsibility in the infrastructure projects it provides loans for and places greater emphasis on the goal of promoting economic engagement by the poorest people in its target countries. As a result, the World Bank now claims to focus on the eradication of hunger, gender equality, environmental sustainability, maternal health and child mortality, communicable disease prevention, and universal primary education in its target countries.

The Real Story

As readers of these pages will no doubt be aware, there is of course more to the story than that glossy, PR-friendly official story would have us believe. The period of McNamara’s stewardship from 1968-1980 was instrumental in shaping the institution that we know (or should know) today: a tool of the Washington power players that is used as a way of transferring the productive wealth of the third world back to the first world. The larger capital that was raised during his tenure was used to expand the bank’s lending activities, and those expanded loans kicked off the era of the third world debt crisis, including a period from 1976 to 1980 where developing world debt rose on average 20% per year.

As journalist John Pilger noted in his powerful documentary, “War By Other Means,” released back in 1991:
    “Remember Live Aid in 1985, that symbol of concern and generosity? Did you know that during that year, the hungriest countries in Africa gave twice as much money to us in the developed world as we gave to them? There was another famine last year. Perhaps you are one of those who took part in Red Nose Day. Did you know that before that day was over, the equivalent of all the money that comic relief had raised in Britain, about 12 million pounds, had come back to the rich countries? For every day this amount is given by the poorest to the rich on interest payments on loans that most of them never asked for or knew existed. In other words, contrary to a myth long popular in the West, it has been the poor of the world who have financed the rich, not the other way around.”
The process by which these loans are made and the funds distributed to their recipients has long been rife with waste, corruption and fraud. Even in the best circumstances, the types of projects that the Bank concerned itself with in its early days, infrastructure projects focusing on energy and transportation, served to primarily enrich those who were already the richest in the target countries, the friends and cronies of the corrupt rulers whose business interests could make use of such innovations. At its worst, the Bank has been used to underpin the rule of corrupt and tyrannical leaders and force entire nations into debt slavery.

This process was described most famously by former insider and self-described “economic hitman” John Perkins, who wrote his “Confessions of an Economic Hitman” to shed light on the means by which the seemingly benevolent IMF/World Bank system is used to oppress and plunder the very populations it is designed to enrich.

According to Perkins:
    “So how does the system work? We economic hitmen have many vehicles to make this happen, but perhaps the most common one is that we will identify a country—usually a developing country—that has resources our corporations covet, like oil, and then we arrange a huge loan to that country from the World Bank or one of its sister organizations.
    “Now most everybody in our country believes that loan is going to help poor people. It isn’t. Most of the money never goes to the country. In fact it goes to our own corporations. It goes to the Bechtels and the Halliburtons and the ones we all hear about, usually led by engineering firms, but a lot of other companies are brought in and they make fortunes off building the infrastructure projects in that country. Power plants, industrial parks, ports, those types of things. Things that don’t benefit the poor people at all; they’re not connected to the electrical grid, they don’t get the jobs in the industrial parks because they’re not educated enough. But they as a class are left holding a huge debt. The country goes deep into debt in order to make this happen, and a few of its wealthy people get very rich in the process. They own the big industries that do benefit from the ports and the highways and the industrial parks and the electricity.
    “The country is left holding this huge debt that it can’t possibly repay, so at some point we economic hitmen go back in and we say, ‘You know, you can’t pay your debts. You owe us a pound of flesh, you owe us a big favor. So sell your oil real cheap to our oil companies, or vote with us on the next critical United Nations vote, or send troops in support of our to some place in the world like Iraq.’ And so we use this whole process as, first of all, a means for getting their money (money we loan them) to enrich our own corporations, and then to use the debt to enslave them.”
In his book, “The Globalization of Poverty and the New World Order,” Professor Michel Chossudovsky of the University of Ottawa provides extensive documentation of precisely how this process has functioned over the years through the Structural Adjustment Loan and Sector Adjustment Loan programs at the World Bank’s disposal. This documentation includes details of the Bank’s oversight of the build-up of Rwanda’s military budget in the run-up to its bloody internal war of 1994, the Bank’s own admission of how its loan-dictated deregulation of Vietnam’s grain market led to widespread child malnutrition in the country, and the World Bank’s contribution (in conjunction with the IMF) to the unprecedented plundering of Russia that took place in the wake of the Soviet collapse.

The World Bank, despite its friendly exterior and the lofty platitudes its proponents spout in its defense, continues to undergird a system of exploitation and debt enslavement of developing countries. For half a century, the Bank has been responsible for the furtherance of a Pax Americana built not upon peace, prosperity and free trade but violence, debt and enforced servitude.

The Rest of the Story

…But now along comes the New Development Bank promising an alternative to the World Bank hegemony. Unlike the Structural Adjustment Loan regime of the World Bank, the NDB is promising to provide loans with no strings attached; the BRICS have no interest in telling loan recipients how to run their country.

Is this a fundamental challenge to the system as it exists? Is the NDB likely to live up to the lofty expectations that have been placed on it? In what time frame can we expect to see the changes to the international order take place?

The answer to these questions constitute what Paul Harvey would call in his trademark drawl, “the rest of the story…” and we will explore that story here next week.

August 18, 2014

Greeks Win Silver At European 5km Open-Water Event in Germany

Three Greek swimmers won silver in the 5 km open-water team event of the 32nd LEN European Swimming Championships in Berlin at the weekend. The games run from August 13-24 and include the categories of Swimming, Diving, Open Water and Synchro (synchronized swimming).

The Greek team consisted of Spyros Gianniotis, Antonis Fokaidis and Kelly Araouzou, and they collected Greece's first medal in this year's European championship.

The winning teams had the following times, with split timings (2.5 km) in the race given in parentheses:

1. Netherlands, 55:47.8 (27:59.9)

2. Greece, 56:05.5 (28:01.8)

3. Germany, 56:14.8 (28:03.3)

According to a dispatch from ANA-MPA, Prime Minister Antonis Samaras sent a message of congratulations to three Greek athletes, saying, "You proved that hard work and team work wins in the end. All Greeks feel proud of you; thank you."

Respect for Truth No Longer Exists By Western Media

Dr. Paul Craig Roberts, who was Assistant Secretary of the United Sates Treasury for Economic Policy and associate editor of the Wall Street Journal says that the Western media is comprised of ignorant and incompetent fools or a whorehouse that sells war for money. Roberts, who was also a columnist for Business Week, Scripps Howard News Service, and Creators Syndicate notes that Western media’s only purpose nowadays is not to tell the truth, but to demonize Russia.

Here is his latest article:

Dr. Paul Craig Roberts - The Western media have proved for all to see that the Western media comprises either a collection of ignorant and incompetent fools or a whorehouse that sells war for money.

The Western media fell in step with Washington and blamed the downed Malaysian airliner on Russia. No evidence was provided. In its place the media used constant repetition. Washington withheld the evidence that proved that Kiev was responsible. The media’s purpose was not to tell the truth, but to demonize Russia.

Now we have the media story of the armored Russian column that allegedly crossed into Ukraine and was destroyed by Ukraine’s rag-tag forces that ISIS would eliminate in a few minutes. British reporters fabricated this story or were handed it by a CIA operative working to build a war narrative. The disreputable BBC hyped the story without investigating. The German media, including Die Welt, blared the story throughout Germany without concern at the absence of any evidence. Reuters news agency, also with no investigation, spread the story. Readers tell me that CNN has been broadcasting the fake story 24/7. Although I cannot stand to watch it, I suspect Fox “news” has also been riding this lame horse hard. Readers tell me that my former newspaper, The Wall Street Journal, which has fallen so low as to be unreadable, also spread the false story. I hope they are wrong. One hates to see the complete despoliation of one’s former habitat.

The media story is preposterous for a number of reasons that should be obvious to a normal person.

The first reason is that the Russian government has made it completely clear that its purpose is to de-escalate the situation. When other former Russian territories that are part of present day Ukraine followed Crimea, voted their independence and requested reunification with Russia, President Putin refused. To underline his de-escalation, President Putin asked the Russian Duma to rescind his authority to intervene militarily in Ukraine in behalf of the former Russian provinces. As the Russian government, unlike Washington or EU governments, stresses legality and the rule of law, Russian military forces would not be sent into Ukraine prior to the Duma renewing Putin’s authority so to do.

The second reason the story is obviously false is that if the Russian government decides to invade Ukraine, Russia would not send in one small armored group unprotected by air cover or other forces. If Russia invades Ukraine, it will be with a force capable of rolling up the rag-tag Ukrainian forces, most of which are semi-private militias organized by nazis. The “war” would last a few hours, after which Ukraine would be in Russia’s hands where it resided for hundreds of years prior to the dissolution of the Soviet Union and Washington’s successful efforts in 1991 to take advantage of Russian weakness to break apart the constituent provinces of Russia herself.

The third reason that the story is obviously false is that not a single Western news organization hyping the story has presented a shred of evidence in its behalf.

What we witness in this fabricated story is the total lack of integrity in the entirety of
the Western media.

A story totally devoid of any evidence to support it has been broadcast world wide. The White House has issued a statement saying that it cannot confirm the story, but nevertheless the White House continues to issue accusations against Russia for which the White House can supply no evidence. Consequently, Western repetition of bald-faced lies has become truth for huge numbers of peoples. As I have emphasized in my columns, these Western lies are dangerous, because they provoke war.

The same group in Washington and the same Western “media” are telling the same kind of lies that were used to justify Washington’s wars in Iraq (weapons of mass destruction), Afghanistan (Taliban = al Qaeda), Syria (use of chemical weapons), Libya (an assortment of ridiculous charges), and the ongoing US military murders in Pakistan, Yemen, and Somalia.

The city upon the hill, the light unto the world, the home of the exceptional, indispensable people is the home of Satan’s lies where truth is prohibited and war is the end game.

Update: After pretending that the Russian humanitarian truck convoy contained a hidden invasion force, the stooge Kiev government was forced by facts on the ground to officially acknowledge that the trucks only contained aid for those that the Kiev stooge government has been bombing and attacking with artillery.

About the author - Dr. Paul Craig Roberts'  internet columns have attracted a worldwide following. Roberts' latest books are The Failure of Laissez Faire Capitalism and Economic Dissolution of the West and How America Was Lost.

The Significance of The Findings (And Tomb) At Ancient Amphipolis

The excavations at ancient Amphipolis in northern Greece have indeed caught the attention of the whole world and there is anticipation in what Greek archaeologists will discover there. And why wouldn't they? The announcement of forthcoming major discoveries, as conveyed by Prime Minister Antonis Samaras himself during a visit to the site last week. is no laughing matter.

The large site with its newly-discovered monumental wall protecting a tomb dated to the fourth century BC is not only one of the most talked about sites on earth at the moment, the  findings in Amphipolis and the revelations that are yet to come -on who is buried inside the tomb - only prove that the Greece still has many wonders and secrets to share with the world.

The excavations resumed on Monday morning after a long weekend celebrating Dormition day (August 15).

The large site, with its monumental wall protecting a tomb dated from the 4th century B.C., has been closed to the public and has been under heavy police guard.

Architect Michalis Lefantzis arrived at the site early on Monday morning in order to participate in the efforts which are being headed by lead archaeologist Katerina Peristeri.

The biggest concern right now is that the wall, which is created from limestone, may become brittle if there is water in the tomb or if the weight of the stone structures over the burial mound force the area to cave in. In either case, some of the stones from the lower rows of the protective wall have been crushed and there is fear that the tons of earth held in place may cave in once the wall is removed. To avoid any safety hazards, archaeologists are considering using small forklifts.

Meanwhile, archaeologists refuted some reports claiming that cranes have been called in to remove the bodies of the two headless sphinxes-lions guarding the tomb. From what we learn here at HellasFrappe, they are instead using a special crane to detach the marble plates in front and next to the Sphinxes, which are projected to weigh half tonne each.

If all goes well, then the researchers will in no time identify the person buried there based on bones, gender and other such data. But until then mums the word and any details about the excavation is completely confidential.

So much so that the only authority that has the power to make any announcement regarding the developments at the site is the Greek Ministry of Culture and Sport, so it is no wonder why it only heightens the intrigue about who is buried there both domestically and internationally. This is probably why the BBC is sending a crew to the site in the next few days in order to cover all the developments as they occur.

The only information that we were able to mass here at HellasFrappe states that a large number of tourists visited the area last weekend to observe the archaeological finds. In fact there were so many people in the area that the Amphipolis Museum posted a record high in visitors. Everyone wanted to marvel over the exhibits but mostly take a peak at the excavation site. Some were able to do so, but obviously from a distance with the aid of a special telescopic lens.

No one has a clue what is buried behind the walls, but, from what we read in the Greek press, archaeologists are hoping to find mythical wealth there. Let us keep in mind that this site is close to the city of Amphipolis which at one time was very rich on account of its gold reserves. Also, if it is the burial site of one of Alexander’s commanders then it too will also contain priceless treasures.

The only concern is that the tomb could have also been looted years ago. In fact the Sunday Edition of To Vima said that Peristeri apparently used a microcamera to take a peak inside the tomb and she detected faces on a metal roof, as well as noted backfilling.

Some estimate that the discovery is similar to that of Philip’s tomb by professor Andronikos in the 1970s, which was a great contribution to the efforts of the Greek government at the time in the Macedonian dispute.

Indeed. when everything seems bleak in our corner of the world, such as the Arab Spring, the war in Syria, the uprisings in the Middle East, the Russian embargo, the crisis in Ukraine, the tragic events unfolding in Iraq, the slaughtering of Christians and the bombings in Gaza and Israel, the announcement of a discovery of an ancient tomb that is dated to the time of Alexander the Great is in some way helping Greeks to overcome their misery and in some cases even giving them a sense of hope.

The optimism is a breath of fresh air. It couldn't have arrived at a better time. After four long years of austerity, the Troika, and being badly criticized all over the globe, Greeks just might begin to gain their pride back - just as Alexander would have intended them to do.

Read more on this story by clicking HERE and HERE

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