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Posts tagged ‘Russia’

EXCLUSIVE: Hungarian Foreign Minister Says Ukraine-Russia War Would Not Have Happened Under Trump


By HENRY RODGERS, SENIOR CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT | October 26, 2022

Read more at https://dailycaller.com/2022/10/26/hungary-foreign-minister-peter-szijjarto-ukraine-russia-war-joe-biden-donald-trump/

Henry Rodgers and Foreign Minister of Hungary Péter Szijjártó:Daily Caller Obtained
Henry Rodgers and Foreign Minister of Hungary Péter Szijjártó:Daily Caller Obtained

WASHINGTON, DC – The foreign minister of Hungary, Péter Szijjártó, in part, blamed the current war between Ukraine and Russia on President Joe Biden in an exclusive interview Wednesday with the Daily Caller. He argued that if the 2020 election had played out differently, there would be no war.

Szijjártó sat down for an interview with the Caller after speaking at the International Atomic Energy Agency’s (IAEA) International Ministerial Conference and discussed a variety of different issues affecting the U.S. and Europe, including the war in Ukraine. Throughout the interview, Szijjártó made it clear he believes that if former President Donald Trump and former Chancellor of Germany Angela Merkel were still in power, the war would not have started.

“The European economy is suffering. Europe is suffering. That is why the only solution for Europe is peace. But definitely, peace will not come with this behavior. What the U.S. administration has been showing. Why? Because in order to create peace, you would need to talk. You would need to communicate,” Szijjártó said during the interview. “And you know, I am usually under very heavy pressure and criticism of why I still talk to the Russians. But, you know, I mean, you cannot afford not to talk to them when you are almost hundred percent dependent on their energy sources and Russia is a reality in Europe, and Russia will remain a reality in Europe regardless of the outcome of this war.”

He continued:

“So, you know, what we are definitely sure about is that if your presidential election had played out differently in 2020, this war would not have broken out. As much as I can be sure about things that didn’t happen, I am pretty sure that this would have been the case because we are currently, globally speaking, we are currently lacking leaders. President Trump was a real leader. Chancellor Merkel was a real leader. So what I know is that if Chancellor Merkel. And if President Trump had stayed in power, this war, I’m pretty sure, would not have been broken out. So that’s why what we hope is that there will be some American-Russian talks in this regard because don’t be misled. Don’t be misled. This is necessary to create peace. Russian-American talks.

(Henry Rodgers and Foreign Minister of Hungary Péter Szijjártó: Daily Caller Obtained)

On Monday, a group of 30 Democrats in Congress requested that the Biden administration seek negotiations with Putin. Several have since walked back their support. (RELATED: ‘Easier Dealing With The Taliban’: Hungarian Officials Blast US Over Lack Of Help In Afghanistan Evacuation)

Szijjártó echoed their concerns, however, mentioning the upcoming November G-20 summit in Indonesia, which Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin are scheduled to attend, as an opportunity for the two leaders to talk. The Hungarian minister’s suggestion comes despite claims that U.S. officials are making sure Biden does talk with Putin, per Politico. Biden himself previously told CNN’s Jake Tapper said he will not meet the Russian president except maybe to discuss American Britney Griner, who is serving a 9-year sentence in Russian prison. (RELATED: EXCLUSIVE: Here’s Why Hungary Is Incentivizing Children, Marriage)

“I do hope that those discussions, which are necessary to finish the war, will take place soon. And I don’t want to degrade anyone, but I am pretty certain that these negotiations must take place between the American and the Russian administration,” Szijjártó said. “And, you know, I hope that both of them will behave responsibly because I understand that there will be a G20 meeting. I understand that there is a chance that both of the presidents might be there. And to be honest, I think it would be very, very complicated to explain to the world from both perspectives, why they have not met, if they. If they are on the same place. So, you know, we in Hungary cannot do anything more than just wish, hope, and pray.”

“I want to underline that I really do believe and think that if he had stayed in power, this wouldn’t have broken out,” he added.

As of Oct. 3, the U.S. has spent 52 billion euros in military, financial and humanitarian aid in Ukraine, according to the Kiel Institute for the World Economy. Hungary has urged an immediate ceasefire and end to the conflict. (RELATED: Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban To Speak At CPAC In Texas)

‘The stakes are very high’: John Kirby doubles down on Biden’s ‘Armageddon’ comments


By Anugrah Kumar, Christian Post Contributor | October 10, 2022

Read more at https://www.christianpost.com/news/john-kirby-doubles-down-on-bidens-armageddon-comments.html/

White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said President Joe Biden’s recent remark regarding the “prospect of Armageddon” over Russian President Vladimir Putin’s nuclear threats reflects “the very high stakes that are in play right now.”

ABC “This Week” host Martha Raddatz asked Kirby about Biden’s comment last week that there’s a potential nuclear Armageddon.

Kirby responded, “The president was reflecting the very high stakes that are in play right now.”

He continued: “When you have modern nuclear power and the leader of that modern nuclear power willing to use irresponsible rhetoric the way that Mr. Putin has several times in just the last week or two, as well as the high tension in Ukraine over just the course of the last few days … so the president, I think, was accurately reflecting the fact that the stakes are very high right now.”

Kirby then clarified that Biden’s comments were “not based on new or fresh intelligence or new indications that Mr. Putin has made a decision to use nuclear weapons and, quite frankly, we don’t have any indication that he has made that kind of decision.”

But he added, “Nor have we seen anything that would give us pause to reconsider our own strategic nuclear posture in our efforts to defend our own national security interests and those of our allies and partners.”

Kirby said the president has also said, “neither we nor our allies are going to be intimidated by this.”

At a Democratic fundraiser in New York City last Thursday, Biden said Putin was “not joking when he talks about the use of tactical nuclear weapons or biological or chemical weapons.”

“We have not faced the prospect of Armageddon since Kennedy and the Cuban Missile Crisis,” he added, according to The Associated Press, which noted that the president’s remarks were the starkest warnings yet by the U.S. government about the nuclear stakes.

Biden also suggested the threat from Putin is real “because his military is — you might say — significantly underperforming.”

Last month, Putin said, “I want to remind you that our country also has various means of destruction … and when the territorial integrity of our country is threatened, to protect Russia and our people, we will certainly use all the means at our disposal. It’s not a bluff,” as quoted by the AP.

As the Russian invasion entered its seventh month in October, Ukraine sought an accelerated membership in NATO after Putin announced the annexation of four Ukrainian provinces: the Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions. Putin claimed that residents in the annexed Ukrainian regions voted in a referendum to join his nation. Ukrainian officials called the voting coerced by Russian soldiers.

“The Kremlin’s sham referenda are a futile effort to mask what amounts to a further attempt at a land grab in Ukraine,” U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in a statement at the time. “To be clear: the results were orchestrated in Moscow and do not reflect the will of the people of Ukraine.”

The U.S. has sent more than $9.8 billion in civilian and military assistance to Ukraine since Russia’s invasion began in February. Late last month, Biden signed a bill that includes an additional $12.3 billion for Ukraine’s war effort against Russia. Apart from Ukraine aid and funding for government agencies, the bill authorizes Biden to direct the drawdown of up to $3.7 billion for the transfer of excess weapons to Ukraine from U.S. stocks.

According to the United Nations Office for High Commissioner for Human Rights, as of Oct. 2, at least 6,114 civilians have been killed and 9,132 injured since the invasion started on Feb. 24.

Germany’s Green Energy Follies Are A Warning To The United States


BY: HELEN RALEIGH | SEPTEMBER 14, 2022

Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/09/14/germanys-green-energy-follies-are-a-warning-to-the-united-states/

Angela Merkel and Vladimir Putin

Author Helen Raleigh profile

HELEN RALEIGH

VISIT ON TWITTER@HRALEIGHSPEAKS

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Germany is reportedly working on reducing the nation’s economic dependency on Communist China due to concerns about “human rights abuses and the risks of being beholden to an increasingly assertive authoritarian state,” Reuters reports. Berlin finally learned one lesson from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine: it’s dangerous to economically rely on authoritarian regimes. 

Former German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s policies — building an economy based on Russia’s energy supply and China’s market demand — were primarily responsible for German’s economic predicament today. Zealous in fighting climate change, Merkel shut down coal mines and retired the majority of nuclear power plants in Germany while relying on Russia for energy and raw materials, despite repeated warnings from the Trump administration. By 2020, Russia supplied more than half of Germany’s natural gas and about a third of all the oil that Germans burned to heat homes, power factories, and fuel vehicles.

While paying Russia billions of euros for energy supply (the money no doubt helped finance Putin’s war chest), Merkel neglected to invest in German’s armed forces, even after Putin annexed the Crimean Peninsula from Ukraine. She outsourced Germans’ and, to a larger extent, Europe’s security to the United States and simply hoped for the best. When Merkel retired in 2021, after being in office for 16 years, German’s military was left “in a weak position and require years of renewal to become a credible deterrent to Russian aggression,” according to The American Institute for Contemporary German Studies.  

Strengthened China Ties

Besides empowering and enriching Russia, Merkel was keen on strengthening Germany’s economic ties with China while in office. No other leaders from Western democracies had visited China more often than Merkel (she had 11 state visits to China).

To promote Germany’s export-oriented economy, Merkel was indifferent to China’s aggression in the South China Sea, its geopolitical expansion through the “Belt and Road” infrastructure project, and its increasingly assertive foreign policies. In addition, she avoided criticizing China’s mishandling of Covid-19 in the early days of 2020 and turned a blind eye to many human rights abuses in China, especially the genocide of Uyghur Muslims and suppression of the pro-democracy movement in Hong Kong. 

Under Merkel, China became Germany’s largest trading partner in 2016. German’s auto industry especially relies on China — about 50 percent of German car maker Volkswagen’s profit comes from China. Merkel’s China policy has made Germany’s economy vulnerable and helped speed up the Chinese military’s modernization.

Beijing reportedly focused on investments in Germany to obtain critical technologies, especially those with dual-use, meaning both civilian and military applications. For example, engines made by German companies have powered several types of Chinese navy warships, Deutsche Welle found.  

Although Merkel retired in 2021, the effects of her economic policies continued. According to a German Economic Institute (IW) study, Germany’s economic dependency on China has continued to grow in 2022. “China’s share of German imports rose to 12.4 percent in the first half of 2022, compared with only 3.4 percent in 2000. German imports of Chinese goods… have surged by 45.7 percent year-on-year in the comparable period of the first six months. Germany’s trade deficit with the country had leapt to almost EUR 41 bn by mid-2022.”

A Wake-Up Call

After Russia invaded Ukraine, Germany joined other EU nations in imposing punitive economic sanctions on Russia. Putin retaliated by weaponizing his energy supply to Europe, sending energy prices soaring and dealing a blow to the German economy. 

Inflation in Germany has reached a 40-year high. Suppose Putin shut off the natural gas supply to Europe, as he threatened. In that case, many predict an energy-induced recession in Europe is inevitable, and Germany could lose close to $240 billion in economic output over the next two years.

The grim economic outlook, and the fact that Beijing refused to condemn Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and helped Russia evade the West’s economic sanctions by purchasing Russian energy and agriculture products, have become a wake-up call for Germany. Additionally, Beijing’s “zero-Covid” policy that has kept dozens of cities and millions of Chinese people in lockdown means German businesses have had limited access to the Chinese market, and the trend will continue in the foreseeable future. 

The German Economic Institute called for the government to change its economic policy, “specifically a reduction in incentives for doing business with China and a shift towards more trade with other emerging markets.” It also warned German businesses to “curb their dependency on China.” Otherwise, companies may expose themselves to bankruptcy due to Western sanctions imposed on China in the event of the People’s Liberation Army’s invading Taiwan. 

Deutsche Bank CEO Christian Sewing also warned, “When it comes to dependencies, we also have to face the awkward question of how to deal with China.” He appealed to the German government to decouple economically from China and acknowledged such a move would “require a change no less fundamental than decoupling from Russian energy.” 

Germany Stepping Back

These calls for action have reached their desired audience. Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock acknowledged Germany couldn’t afford to “just behave following the motto ‘business first,’ without taking into account the long-term risks and dependencies.”

Reuters reports that Germany’s economic ministry is considering several actions to cut Germany’s reliance on China, including reducing or scrapping investment and export guarantees for China and no longer promoting trade fairs and manager training there. It is also contemplating screening not just Chinese investments in Germany but also German investments in China. It also might submit a complaint to the World Trade Organization about unfair Chinese trade practices, together with the Group of Seven, an intergovernmental political forum consisting of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

While Germany is waking up to the risks of economic dependency on authoritarian regimes, the Biden administration has deepened our nation’s economic reliance on China with a green revolution that centers around replacing fossil fuels with solar and wind, and gas-powered cars with electric vehicles (EVs). China dominates the global supply chain of raw materials and parts for EV batteries, solar panels, and wind turbines. The nation has been able to keep the manufacturing cost low by burning coal and employing forced labor from Uyghur and other ethnic minorities.

Even Politico has had to admit the dirty truth: “The U.S path to clean energy goes straight through China.” Germany’s economic woes should serve as a timely warning to the Biden administration that relying on an authoritarian regime is both dangerous and foolish.


Helen Raleigh, CFA, is an American entrepreneur, writer, and speaker. She’s a senior contributor at The Federalist. Her writings appear in other national media, including The Wall Street Journal and Fox News. Helen is the author of several books, including “Confucius Never Said” and “Backlash: How Communist China’s Aggression Has Backfired.” Follow her on Parler and Twitter: @HRaleighspeaks.

    ‘Total Lunacy’: Tucker Carlson Calls Out Political Leaders’ Dishonesty About Potential Third World War


    Reported by NICOLE SILVERIO, MEDIA REPORTER | July 13, 2022

    Read more at https://dailycaller.com/2022/07/13/tucker-carlson-political-leaders-dishonesty-third-world-war/

    Daily Caller co-founder Tucker Carlson
    [Screenshot/Rumble/Fox News]

    Fox News host and Daily Caller co-founder Tucker Carlson called out political leaders’ alleged dishonesty Wednesday about a potential third world war. Carlson criticized Republicans for not recognizing “untrue” warnings of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s potential takeover of Europe, pointing to Republican South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham vowing to pass a resolution to name Russia a “sponsor of terrorism” during a trip to Kyiv, Ukraine, along with Democratic Connecticut Sen. Richard Blumenthal.

    “Defeat Putin. Will that improve your life? Is it improving the lives of the Ukrainians right now? No, it’s not,” Carlson said. “And yet, every person who has been on the wrong side of every foreign policy decision going back forty years is on the same page.”

    The Daily Caller co-founder cited former White House national security adviser John Bolton admitting to CNN Tuesday he had formed coups in foreign countries and therefore said the Jan. 6 Capitol riot did not classify as one.

    Carlson mocked CNBC host Jim Cramer calling on President Joe Biden to arm Ukrainians in order for them to successfully defeat Russia. He added that setting up a no-fly zone is not the best foreign policy option. (RELATED: ‘Don’t Dodge The Question’: Tucker Gets In Near Shouting Match With GOP Rep Over Ukraine, Immigration)

    “Wait, what? I tuned in to find out whether I should buy Cisco on the dip, and you’re a foreign policy expert now? The American economy is in serious trouble, it’s heading south faster than anyone anticipated,” the host said. “But instead, you turn on CNBC and the geniuses are talking about World War III. And they’re not the only ones.”

    Carlson pointed to a New York City public service announcement instructing citizens on what to do in the event of a nuclear attack. The video told viewers to go inside, shut doors and windows and immediately clean themselves in the aftermath of the bombing.

    “If you were drinking beer and this came on TV, you would think maybe she was giving you advice on what to do if your basement floods or if there’s a heat wave,” he said. “Then you hear the part where she says, ‘radioactive dust’ and you snap, ‘radioactive dust?’ You’re suggesting someone might lob a nuclear weapon into our largest city? What? What the hell are you talking about? How did we get so close to nuclear war that the city of New York is telling me to wash the radioactive dust off my pants? This is total lunacy. This is crazy.”

    The host said the fear of nuclear war is spreading because the Republican Party has “collaborated” with the Biden administration to defeat Putin and preparing for World War III. 

    NATO Formally Invites Sweden, Finland To Join After Big Breakthrough with Turkey


    Reported by SHELBY TALCOTT, SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT | June 29, 2022

    Read more at https://dailycaller.com/2022/06/29/nato-invites-sweden-finland-join-turkey-ukraine-russia-summit/

    FILE PHOTO: Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan, Finland's President Sauli Niinisto, Sweden's Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, Sweden's Foreign Minister Ann Linde and Finnish Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto react during a NATO summit in Madrid, Spain, June 28, 2022. REUTERS/Violeta Santos Moura/File Photo
    REUTERS/Violeta Santos Moura/File Photo

    The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) formally invited Sweden and Finland to join the alliance on Wednesday after Turkey dropped its opposition to the move. World leaders, including President Joe Biden, gathered in Madrid earlier in the week for the NATO Summit. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan met with Finland President Sauli Niinistö and Sweden Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson on Tuesday to hash out details of the two countries’ push to join NATO – a move that came after Russia invaded Ukraine and which Turkey originally said it would not support.

    “In that meeting, the leaders agreed a trilateral memorandum to address Turkey’s legitimate security concerns, paving the way for Finland and Sweden’s NATO membership,” a NATO statement posted late Tuesday read.

    NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg oversaw the meeting and later praised the result. (RELATED: US Issues Warning To Russia As Finland, Sweden On Cusp Of Joining NATO)

    “I strongly welcome the signing of this trilateral memorandum, and I strongly welcome the constructive approach all three countries have shown during the negotiations. Finnish and Swedish membership of NATO is good for Finland and Sweden, it is good for NATO, and it is good for European security,” Stoltenberg said.

    The official invitation paves the way for the alliance to bolster up to 32 member nations.

    The trilateral agreement between Turkey, Finland and Sweden includes an extradition request for 33 terror suspects in the two Nordic countries, according to CNN. The agreement also addresses concerns from Turkey “around arms exports, and the fight against terrorism,” according to Stoltenberg.

    “We [Turkey] will ask them to fulfill the requirements of our applications after this memorandum of understanding,” Turkish Justice Prime Minister Bekir Bozdag told reporters shortly after the news, according to CNN. “We have already applied for extradition. The files of six PKK and six FETO terrorists in Finland and 10 FETO and 11 PKK terrorists in Sweden.”

    “Our ministry will write about their return and remind them again … Once again, we ask them to fulfill their promises,” Bozdag added.

    Support in Finland and Sweden for joining NATO skyrocketed after Russia’s invasion in February, according to Business Insider. Should the deal officially go through, Russia’s border with NATO countries would more than double. Turkey’s reversal is a major loss to Russian President Vladimir Putin, who has vehemently opposed increasing NATO and vowed to retaliate in May after Finland announced its intention to seek membership.

    “Russia will be forced to take retaliatory steps, both of a military-technical and other nature, in order to stop threats to its national security arising,” Russia’s foreign ministry said at the time.

    BREAKING: Did Lithuania Light the Fuse on World War III?


    Reported By Larry Johnson | Published June 18, 2022

    Read more at https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2022/06/breaking-lithuania-light-fuse-world-war-iii/

    In a move of staggering stupidity and hubris, Lithuanian banned the transit of Russian goods to Kaliningrad effective today, June 18, 2022.  Kaliningrad, which is wedged between Poland on the west and Lithuania on the east, is home to almost a half-million Russians and the headquarters for the Russian Navy’s Baltic Sea force.

    Poland to build watchtowers at Kaliningrad enclave border - EURACTIV.com

    Lithuania claims it is simply abiding by the sanctions imposed by the European Union. After all, Lithuania is a member of the European Union and NATO. But that is the point. This is a deliberate provocation. It is laying economic siege to a vital interest of Russia. While there is no immediate danger to the Russian population of Kaliningrad, this is a flash point that could lead to an actual war as opposed to a special military operation.

    What is the difference between a special military operation and war? In the SMO you leave communications, electrical infrastructure, transportation infrastructure and fuel depots largely intact. In the SMO you try to minimize civilian and military casualties.

    War on the other hand is terrifying. If Russia opts for a war footing, the restraint that characterized its activities in Ukraine will be replaced by a full-on attack on key military installations and assets in the region as well as the destruction of the communications, electrical, transportation and fuel resources of the adversary. This probably includes taking out critical satellite communications and intelligence collection systems of the United States and Europe.

    Kaliningrad, formerly known as Königsberg, was put under Soviet control in 1945 according to the terms of the Potsdam Agreement, which was backed by the United States and Great Britain. The Russian people paid blood for this land in 1945 and are not going to relinquish it in the face of bullying or threats from the west. If you are going to poke an angry bear with a stick, you better be damn sure that bear is locked up and can’t get you. Russia sure as hell is not secure in a cage.

    The J6 Inquisition Is An Obvious Soviet-Style Show Trial


    REPORTED BY: TRISTAN JUSTICE | JUNE 10, 2022

    Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/06/10/the-j6-inquisition-is-an-obvious-soviet-style-show-trial/

    Jan. 6 Committee Prime Time Hearing

    As during Communist control of Soviet Russia, the Jan. 6 Committee’s purpose is to prop up a dying, corrupt regime.

    Author Tristan Justice profile

    TRISTAN JUSTICE

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    The House Select Committee on Jan. 6 launched the public phase of its proceedings Thursday night in a prime-time hearing with all the fanfare of a Soviet show trial, complete with production assistance from a former president of ABC News.

    Just as the communists gathered in Moscow between 1936 and 1938 to purge their political opponents in public show trials, nine members of the lower chamber filed into the Cannon House Office Building to demonize their political opponents as domestic enemies.

    “I’m from a part of the country where people justify the actions of slavery, Ku Klux Klan, and lynching,” Chairman Bennie Thompson of Mississippi said in his opening. “I’m reminded of that dark history as I hear voices today try and justify the actions of the insurrectionists on January 6th, 2021.”

    Thompson went on the brand today’s political opposition as modern-day Confederates and “domestic enemies of the Constitution,” cloaking his own authoritarian admonishment under the moral righteousness of preserving American democracy.

    “The world is watching what we do here,” Thompson said. “America has long been expected to be shining city on the hill, a beacon of hope and freedom, a model for others when we are at our best.”

    The hearing, however, possessed all the signature hallmarks of the infamous Moscow Trials nearly 100 years ago, in which opponents to Joseph Stalin’s regime were hauled before the public and charged with treason and sedition. And those who stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6 are far from the only targets of the witch hunt spearheaded by Wyoming Rep. Liz Cheney and Rep. Thompson.

    Legitimate political opposition on Thursday was absent from the hearings. No counternarrative was allowed by the regime, which barred the opposing party’s selected representatives as every cable network except Fox News carried the programming live. Members conducting the show trial accused their opponents of conspiracy to topple the U.S. government, just as the Soviets accused Old Bolshevik leaders of plans to terminate Stalin. Never mind that American institutions held on Jan. 6, and the federal government came nowhere close to collapse when congressional proceedings were interrupted.

    The trials in Moscow culminated in the “Great Purge” of dissidents to the incumbent regime, with defendants given death sentences. The Jan. 6 proceedings are aimed at the ultimate purge of former President Donald Trump and his supporters, albeit through societal exile and jail sentences as opposed to execution. According to whistleblowers in the FBI, a purge within the federal law enforcement agency has already begun.

    On Tuesday, Ohio Republican Rep. Jim Jordan sent a letter to FBI Director Christopher Wray detailing allegations of multiple whistleblowers who reported they were terminated for their dissident (conservative) views from the agency.

    “[He is a] decorated Iraqi War veteran being run out of the FBI,” Jordan said on Fox News Tuesday night of one whistleblower. “His allegiance to the country is being questioned because he had the gall to say something that offended the FBI leadership about the Jan. 6 investigation.”

    The other [individual] is also having the same thing happen to them simply because, on an anonymous questionnaire, they said something that the leadership disagreed with them about Jan. 6.

    Six in total have come forward, Jordan told Fox News’s Laura Ingraham.

    Meanwhile, the Jan. 6 Committee’s prime targets have included prominent members of the prior administration, just as Stalin’s deputies prosecuted leaders of the old regime. On Friday, former Trump Trade Advisor Peter Navarro was taken by the FBI in handcuffs and charged with crimes stemming from the committee’s work. On Thursday morning, hours before the Jan. 6 Committee’s prime-time show trial, lead Michigan GOP gubernatorial candidate Ryan Kelley was arrested by the same agency.

    Of the more than 100 subpoenas issued by the Select Committee ostensibly established to probe the Capitol riot, less than 10 percent, according to a Federalist analysis, have targeted individuals directly involved in the chaos. The rest have gone after Americans who committed the now-apparent crime of holding a peaceful demonstration at the White House and espoused unacceptable views in the eyes of the incumbent regime.


    Tristan Justice is the western correspondent for The Federalist. He has also written for The Washington Examiner and The Daily Signal. His work has also been featured in Real Clear Politics and Fox News. Tristan graduated from George Washington University where he majored in political science and minored in journalism. Follow him on Twitter at @JusticeTristan or contact him at Tristan@thefederalist.com.

    Putin’s Useful Idiots: How U.S. Climate Extremists Are Funding Russia’s Agenda


    REPORTED BY: VICTORIA COATES AND JENNIFER STEFANO | MAY 19, 2022

    Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/05/19/putins-useful-idiots-how-us-climate-extremists-are-funding-russias-agenda/

    john kerry shakes hands with putin

    The desolation of U.S. energy security has bolstered Vladimir Putin’s dangerous geopolitical aims.

    Author Victoria Coates and Jennifer Stefano profile

    VICTORIA COATES AND JENNIFER STEFANO

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    Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is illuminating an ugly truth: the anti-fracking war on America’s energy security is being waged by well-funded, radical U.S. environmental groups, as well as interests tied directly to Vladimir Putin. For years, the U.S. government has investigated Russian financial ties to environmental groups that push for ending U.S. fossil fuel production and have successfully shut down fracking sites and pipelines, to the detriment of U.S. workers and consumers. Who benefits? Putin, because the desolation of U.S. energy security has bolstered state-owned Gazprom and his dangerous geopolitical aims.

    Before the war on Ukraine, the U.S. Congress began exposing connections between Russia and little-known foundations that donate to major environmental groups such as Sierra Club and National Resource Defense Council (NRDC). The Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works released a 2014 report noting a small group of rich Americans was controlling environmental groups and collaborating with questionable offshore funders to maximize support. In 2017, two congressmen called for further investigation of the connection between these funders and Russia. These suspicious donations to radical environmental groups could be part of the larger geopolitical strategy Putin used to execute greater control over Europe before his invasion of Ukraine. For instance, if the United States had ramped up natural gas production, Putin could not today be blackmailing Poland and Bulgaria by cutting off their energy supply. Had America allowed more investment in fracking and other energy production, Putin would not have strategic leverage over Europe.

    Most Americans know Putin does not want to see the United States succeed. What they may not know is these anti-energy groups acting under the guise of “environmental justice” are funded by a handful of wealthy Americans who are either blindingly naïve to the role they have played in supporting Putin’s agenda or willfully complicit.

    There is no more notorious example than the Heinz Endowment, led by Teresa Heinz, wife of U.S. climate envoy John Kerry. Under her watch, the endowment has deployed at least $13 million toward anti-shale activism since 2008, killing jobs and prosperity in their own Pennsylvania backyard and unnecessarily forcing America to give up market share to tyrants like Putin. The Heinz fortune funds dozens of Pennsylvania groups engaged in killing pipelines and natural gas production. One of their beneficiaries, Delaware Riverkeeper Network, is successfully fighting to keep a ban on natural gas production in the Delaware River Basin that is preventing access to vast new reserves. In fact, Pennsylvania, where the Heinz family made their fortune and is still based, is bearing the brunt of this campaign. The latest example is the Keystone State’s addition to the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative. Sierra Club and NRDC lobbied in favor of expanding the interstate compact to tax carbon emissions to include Pennsylvania, even though scientists at Penn State found 86 percent of carbon emissions will simply move to nearby states.

    Killing pipelines, banning fracking, and implementing RGGI mean more energy will be produced in other countries with more emissions. Russian gas emits 40 percent more emissions over its lifecycle than U.S. natural gas; meanwhile, U.S. LNG is improving air quality in China. At the same time, Pennsylvanians could lose 22,000 jobs and consumers will face a 30 percent increase in their electricity bills.

    We’re already seeing the unfortunate effects of these harmful policies elsewhere throughout the U.S. Under pressure from these same environmental groups, President Biden killed the Keystone XL pipeline, eliminating the projected 60,000 indirect jobs, 11,000 direct jobs, and $800 million in wages, that would have resulted from this important project.

    As Putin now leverages his energy dominance as a tool of coercion and his geopolitical strategy is brutally playing out for all the world to see, Heinz and other radical environmental groups can no longer claim they are innocent arbiters of environmental justice when their actions have, intentionally or not, aided and abetted him.

    Isn’t it time for these Americans to focus on policies that protect the earth, advance American energy security, and counter America’s enemies?


    Victoria Coates, a distinguished fellow at the American Foreign Policy Council, served as senior policy adviser to the secretary of energy in the Trump administration. Jennifer Stefano is executive vice president of the Commonwealth Foundation and an Independent Women’s Forum visiting fellow.

    VICTOR DAVIS HANSON Op-ed: Imagine the Unimaginable


    Commentary by VICTOR DAVIS HANSON, CONTRIBUTOR | May 12, 2022

    Read more at https://dailycaller.com/2022/05/12/victor-davis-hanson-imagine-the-unimaginable/

    OPED-hanson-GET
    Anton Novoderezhkin/SPUTNIK/AFP/Getty Images/TNS

    Americans are now entering uncharted, revolutionary territory. They may witness things over the next five months that once would have seemed unimaginable. Until the Ukrainian conflict, we had never witnessed a major land war inside Europe directly involving a nuclear power. In desperation, Russia’s impaired and unhinged leader, Russian President Vladimir Putin, now talks trash about the likelihood of nuclear war.

    A 79-year-old President Joe Biden bellows back that his war-losing nuclear adversary is a murderer, a war criminal, and a butcher who should be removed from power.

    After a year of politicizing the U.S. military and its self-induced catastrophe in Afghanistan, America has lost deterrence abroad. China, Iran, North Korea and Russia are conniving how best to exploit this rare window of global military opportunity.

    The traditional bedrocks of the American system – a stable economy, energy independence, vast surpluses of food, hallowed universities, a professional judiciary, law enforcement and a credible criminal justice system – are dissolving. Gas and diesel prices are hitting historic levels. Inflation is at a 40-year high. New cars and homes are unaffordable. The necessary remedy of high interest and tight money will be almost as bad as the disease of hyperinflation.

    There is no southern border.

    Expect over 1 million foreign nationals to swarm this summer into the United States without audit, COVID testing, or vaccination. None will have any worry of consequences for breaking U.S. immigration law.

    Police are underfunded and increasingly defunded. District attorneys deliberately release violent criminals without charges. (Literally 10,000 people witnessed a deranged man with a knife attack comedian Dave Chappelle on stage at the Hollywood Bowl last week, and the Los Angeles County D.A. refused to press felony charges.) Murder and assault are spiraling. Carjacking and smash-and-grab thefts are now normal big-city events.

    Crime is now mostly a political matter. Ideology, race, and politics determine whether the law is even applied.

    Supermarket shelves are thinning, and meats are now beyond the budgets of millions of Americans. An American president – in a first – casually warns of food shortages. Baby formula has disappeared from many shelves.

    Politics are resembling the violent last days of the Roman Republic. An illegal leak of a possible impending Supreme Court reversal of Roe v. Wade that would allow state voters to set their own abortion laws has created a national hysteria.

    Never has a White House tacitly approved mobs of protesters showing up at Supreme Court justices’ homes to rant and bully them into altering their votes.

    There is no free speech anymore on campuses.

    Merit is disappearing. Admissions, hiring, promotion, retention, grading and advancement are predicated increasingly on mouthing the right orthodoxies or belonging to the proper racial, gender or ethnic category.

    When the new campus commissariat finally finishes absorbing the last redoubts in science, math, engineering, medical and professional schools, America will slide into permanent mediocrity and irreversible declining standards of living.

    What happened?

    Remember all these catastrophes are self-induced. They are choices, not fate. The U.S. has the largest combined gas, coal and oil deposits in the world. It possesses the know-how to build the safest pipelines and to ensure the cleanest energy development on the planet.

    Inflation was a deliberate Biden choice. For short-term political advantage, he kept printing trillions of dollars, incentivizing labor non-participation, and keeping interest rates at historical lows – at a time of pent-up global demand.

    The administration wanted no border. Only that way can politicized, impoverished immigrants repay left-wing undermining of the entire legal immigration system with their fealty at the ballot box.

    Once esoteric, crack-pot academic theories – “modern monetary theory,” critical legal theory, critical race theory – now dominate policymaking in the Biden administration.

    The common denominator in all of this is ideology overruling empiricism, common sense, and pragmatism. Ruling elites would rather be politically correct failures and unpopular than politically incorrect, successful, and popular.

    Is that not the tired story of left-wing revolutionaries from 18th-century France to early 20th-century Russia to the contemporary disasters in Cuba and Venezuela?

    The American people reject the calamitous policies of 2021-2022. Yet the radical cadres surrounding a cognitively inert Biden still push them through by executive orders, bureaucratic directives, and deliberate cabinet nonperformance.

    Why? The Left has no confidence either in constitutional government or common sense.

    So as the public pushes back, expect at the ground level more doxxing, cancel culture, deplatforming, ministries of disinformation, swarming the private homes of officials they target for bullying and likely violent demonstrations in our streets this summer.

    Meanwhile, left-wing elites will do their best to ignore Supreme Court decisions, illegally cancel student debts and likely by the fall issue more COVID lockdowns. They will still dream of packing the Court, ending the filibuster, scrapping the Electoral College, adding more states, and flooding the November balloting with hundreds of millions more dollars of dark money from Silicon Valley.

    When revolutionaries undermine the system, earn the antipathy of the people, and face looming disaster at the polls, it is then they prove most dangerous – as we shall see over the next few months.

    Victor Davis Hanson is a distinguished fellow of the Center for American Greatness. He is a classicist and historian at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, and the author of “The Second World Wars: How the First Global Conflict Was Fought and Won,” from Basic Books. You can reach him by e-mailing authorvdh@gmail.com.

    ©2022 Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

    Convoy of Chinese Air Force Cargo Planes Just Landed in Europe, Observers Record Frightening Details


    Reported by Jack Davis | April 10, 2022

    Read more at https://www.westernjournal.com/convoy-chinese-air-force-cargo-planes-just-landed-europe-observers-record-frightening-details/

    On Saturday, six Y-20 cargo planes from China landed in Belgrade, Serbia, reportedly carrying HQ-22 surface-to-air missile systems.

    On Saturday, six Y-20 cargo planes from China landed in Belgrade, Serbia, reportedly carrying HQ-22 surface-to-air missile systems. (@200_zoka / Twitter screen shot)

    Chinese Air Force cargo jets ferried arms to Europe on Saturday as a reminder of China’s long reach into world affairs. Six Y-20 cargo planes were first tracked as they entered European air space before landing in Belgrade, the capital of Serbia, according to The Drive. The report noted one highly unusual measure, perhaps reflective of the conflict in which Europe finds itself.

    “Observers noted at least some of the planes had the covers for their chaff and flare countermeasures systems removed,” The Drive reported.

    “It looks very much like they may have been equipped with live countermeasures, which would be anticipatory of some sort of potential threat. What that threat would have been isn’t clear,” the report said.

    The planes’ presence alone would have been notable, the report continued.

    “The Y-20s’ appearance raised eyebrows because they flew en masse as opposed to a series of single-aircraft flights,” The Drive’s report noted. “The Y-20′s presence in Europe in any numbers is also still a fairly new development.”

    The report said that the Chinese planes were carrying HQ-22 surface-to-air missile systems that would be used by Serbia. Serbian military analyst Aleksandar Radic said, “The Chinese carried out their demonstration of force,” according to the Associated Press.

    Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic said Saturday that he will display “the newest pride” of his country’s military on Tuesday or Wednesday.

    TO READ THE REMAINDER OF THIS REPORT GO TO https://www.westernjournal.com/convoy-chinese-air-force-cargo-planes-just-landed-europe-observers-record-frightening-details/

    Jack Davis

    Contributor, News

    Jack Davis is a freelance writer who joined The Western Journal in July 2015 and chronicled the campaign that saw President Donald Trump elected. Since then, he has written extensively for The Western Journal on the Trump administration as well as foreign policy and military issues.

    Focusing On Russia Instead of China Would Be the United States’s Biggest Foreign Policy Mistake Ever


    REPORTED BY: SUMANTRA MAITRA | APRIL 04, 2022

    Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/04/04/focusing-on-russia-instead-of-china-would-be-the-united-statess-biggest-foreign-policy-mistake-ever/

    moscow

    As we reach a month of the Ukrainian war amid talks of possible peace, a strategic appraisal is in order. It appears the Russians thought the war would be easy and fast, the Ukrainians would simply roll over and surrender, and the common people would rise up to greet Russians as liberators. Russian strategic decision-making, worsened by ideological bubbles, turned out to be as haunting as British and American misadventures in Iraq and Libya.

    The Russian officer attrition in this war is on a level rarely observed in any recent conflict, partially because this level of high-intensity, state versus state, multi-domain total war hasn’t occurred in the last few decades. Russia did not foresee that its old-fashioned special operations tactics are obsolete satellites and drones track their movements. The fact that Moscow did not calculate this in their battle plans is a sign of decline, a far cry from its prestigious officer corps training during the Soviet era. The bulk of the Russian navy and air force are still bafflingly underused and functionally unavailable given the intensity of the conflict, giving rise to the suspicion that the Russians are preserving their top-tier weaponry and platforms in case the war spirals to a continental conflict.

    But, somehow, they are still grinding on. If their objective was to stop Ukraine, Georgia, and Belarus from joining the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), they have achieved it already. They have also managed to cut off the entire east and south of Ukraine. Russia might still win the war and achieve Ukrainian zonal neutrality, given Russia’s sheer weight.

    The Russian rhetorical “denazification” was also recently dropped quietly from the rhetoric. But the demand for Ukrainian neutrality remains and will remain. It was the single major Russian demand. All the other demands were maximalist and malleable, aimed towards negotiation. Ukraine should have taken the opportunity to do a Cold War-era, Austrian-style “neutralitätserklärung,” which would have resulted in the country constitutionally turning neutral, in order to get funding from the European Union and NATO and flourish. Ukrainians have also swallowed their non-achievable EU and NATO membership dream and are currently just as ideologically inflexible and rigid about compromise as Russia. 

    Long-Term Ramifications

    Unfortunately, the long-term ramifications of this war, for the west, are also bleak. Every single conservative restraint and realist gain from the last few years risks being reversed if realists continue to play defense on the rhetorical field of “values” instead of focusing on a narrow, populist interest. 

    The absolutely mindless idea of a no-fly zone in an active warzone with a nuclear great power was narrowly avoided by 78 experts writing an open letter against it. Incidentally, support for a no-fly zone declines among Americans the moment it is explained.

    But the war hysteria in the first few weeks of the campaign, aided by the usual suspects, demonstrated just how close to power and catastrophe these ideologues were. When a former deputy assistant secretary of defense and a former supreme allied commander of NATO argue for a no-fly zone, one needs to remember they are one step away from real advisory power and might be so again in the future. 

    A conservative realist grand strategy that focuses on America’s southern borders and argues for Europeans to pay for European defense first needs a realist rhetoric and public relations strategy. It must discuss the public interest, in a language common people will understand and appreciate. Pursuing such a strategy would require a total clean-up of the administrative state and Obama-era holdovers next time Republicans are in power. The hold-outs of liberal internationalism are deeply embedded within the ever-expansive national security bureaucracy.

    War Is Burying Liberal Internationalism

    Rampant war hysteria has resulted in limited diplomatic maneuverability, a realization that is slowly emerging. As the Financial Times noted, “since Feb 24, the west has been galvanized into more unity than it has shown in years. Yet most of the world is on the side lines waiting to see which way it goes. Not for the first time, the west risks mistaking itself for global consensus.”

    No matter how many times fanatical liberal internationalists cry about this war suddenly rejuvenating liberalism, the reality cannot be further from truth. The war proves great powers can deter other great powers and are the only actors that matter, that nationalism is the strongest social force, that interests trump values, norms, and laws. Thus, the war is quite clearly not saving “liberal internationalism” but burying it.

    Two of the largest non-western powers are either neutral or tacitly supporting Russia, simply because of the idea that great powers should have their own spheres of influence. The balancing powers in Europe also argued against NATO being a co-belligerent.

    Realism Isn’t Isolationism At All

    Anglo-American foreign policy realists are not pacifists or isolationists. They simply prioritize a greater strategic threat in China. Wars have their own momentum. The chance of a great power being dragged into war due to foolish or overzealous mistakes of smaller peripheral allies is a far bigger threat, as the current world is functionally similar to a multipolar system prior to the First World War than a relatively binary and Manichean conflict of the Second.

    Russia, bogged down in Ukraine already, is not a hegemonic threat comparable to Nazi Germany. The EU’s total population is around 450 million, more than the United States (339 million) and much more than Russia (144 million). The EU’s gross domestic product also dwarfs Russia’s, and just the top four European defense budgets combined are larger than Russia’s. Yet, instead of an actual material pivot to Asia, the United States currently has more than 100,000 troops deployed in Europe.

    Globally, the biggest future rival is China. China is almost incomparable in size and power next to previous rivals such as Nazi Germany, Imperial Japan, and even the USSR. There is nothing they would prefer more than the United States being dragged back to Europe. Ultimately, the U.S. objective should be not to prolong the war, but to focus on China as a rising threat. Ukrainian neutrality would have sorted the issue for good. But Russia has already been pushed into the arms of the Chinese due to the war.

    By not allowing an amoral balance of power, wherein we let Russia have a small sphere of influence as a grand bargain instead of being over-committed to Europe, Washington risks undercutting its long-term strategic interests by unknowingly accelerating China’s. In a twist of fate, President Joe Biden is now mirroring former President Donald Trump.

    Biden’s old Cold War equilibrium instinct is under siege by his own activist administration, determined to defeat Russian “reactionary imperial patriarchy” and defend foreign borders, statues, and churches — instincts they would never allow at home. The almost theological focus on being a part of a conflict in the far corners of Eastern Europe to ensure the continuation of a liberal democratic revolution is fundamentally undercutting American grand strategy, which historically tried to split Russia and China. Ultimately, pushing Russia to be a Chinese satellite might turn out to be our greatest historic blunder.


    Dr. Sumantra Maitra is a national-security fellow at The Center for the National Interest; a non-resident fellow at the James G Martin Center; and an elected early career historian member at the Royal Historical Society. He is a senior contributor to The Federalist, and can be reached on Twitter @MrMaitra.

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    Hunter Biden’s Laptops Are Now An Active National Security Threat


    REPORTED BY: MARGOT CLEVELAND | MARCH 28, 2022

    Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/03/28/hunter-bidens-laptops-are-now-an-active-national-security-threat/

    Joe Biden

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    On Friday, The Daily Mail reported that emails recovered from Hunter Biden’s laptop show he helped an infectious disease research company pursue projects in Ukraine. Those emails confirm portions of charges Russia made the previous day that an investment group run by the now-president’s son had funded a company conducting research at biological laboratories in Ukraine. While these developments add another scandal to the long list of Biden family dirty laundry, the more urgent concern for the country should be the continuing threat to our national security posed by a compromised President Biden and the possibility that Russia has access to the catalog of compromising material contained on Hunter’s laptop.

    Mere weeks before then-President Donald Trump and Joe Biden faced off in the November 2020 presidential election, The New York Post published emails obtained from a laptop Hunter Biden had abandoned at a repair shop in Delaware. Those emails revealed that during the elder Biden’s time as Barack Obama’s vice president, Hunter engaged in a pay-to-play scandal, trading off his father’s position to strike deals with players in Ukraine and China. The venture was a family one, with Joe “the Big Guy” Biden listed in one email as set to receive a 10 percent cut of one pending deal and Hunter telling his daughter in another message that “pop” took half of his earnings.

    Even after a former business partner of Hunter Biden’s confirmed the authenticity of the emails, the supposed standard-bearers of journalism buried the scandal and social media outlets censored both the story and The New York Post. Worse still, “more than 50 former senior intelligence officials” signed a letter framing the Hunter Biden emails as Russian disinformation. Among others, former CIA directors or acting directors John Brennan, Leon Panetta, Gen. Michael Hayden, John McLaughlin, and Michael Morell signed the letter. In doing so they gave then-candidate Joe Biden cover to lie to the American public, which he did when Trump confronted him about the scandal during a presidential debate.

    Are you saying the “laptop is now another Russia, Russia, Russia hoax?” Trump asked Biden.

    “That’s exactly what [I] was told,” Biden countered. “There are 50 former national intelligence folks who said that what he’s accusing me of is a Russian plant,” Biden professed to the American public before they went to the polls and elected Biden our commander in chief.

    But even The New York Times has finally admitted the laptop was real and the emails were legitimate. Initially, that admission proved significant because it likewise legitimizes the scandals spawned from the documents recovered from Hunter’s abandoned laptop. However, the trajectory of the scandal changed Friday with The Daily Mail’s exclusive.

    “Emails from Hunter’s abandoned laptop show he helped secure millions of dollars of funding for Metabiota, a Department of Defense contractor specializing in research on pandemic-causing diseases that could be used as bioweapons,” The Daily Mail announced last week. The article continued: “[Biden] also introduced Metabiota to an allegedly corrupt Ukrainian gas firm, Burisma, for a ‘science project’ involving high biosecurity level labs in Ukraine. And although Metabiota is ostensibly a medical data company, its vice president emailed Hunter in 2014 describing how they could ‘assert Ukraine’s cultural and economic independence from Russia’– an unusual goal for a biotech firm.”

    The Daily Mail added more details about Metabiota and Hunter Biden’s role in brokering relationships for the research company in Ukraine. Included throughout the article were copies of the emails ostensibly obtained from Hunter’s laptop that confirmed The Daily Mail’s reporting. The article also added details shedding light on Hunter’s “business” dealings in Ukraine during the time his father served as vice president and America’s point person on issues related to that country. Friday’s exclusive is not the first time The Daily Mail has published never-before-seen material from Hunter Biden’s laptop. Last August, the outlet published “unearthed footage” of Hunter Biden telling a prostitute that, in the summer of 2018, another laptop went missing and he believed Russia had stolen it. At the time, Hunter also expressed concern that the laptop might prove fodder for blackmail since it contained compromising material.

    What distinguishes the emails contained in last week’s Daily Mail article from those published last year is that the most recent release came the day after Russia’s State Duma speaker, Vyacheslav Volodin accused President Biden with being “involved in the creation of bio laboratories in Ukraine,” with Volodin claiming that “an investment fund run by his son Hunter Biden funded research and the implementation of the United States’ military biological program.”

    Soon after Volodin made the charge on Thursday, the Telegraph called Russia’s accusation of Hunter Biden funding Ukrainian biological laboratories an “unsubstantiated claim” “designed to build on negative coverage about [the] president’s son in Right-wing US media.” But with Friday’s release of previously undisclosed emails from Hunter Biden’s laptop, Russia’s claim, at least concerning Hunter Biden’s connection to Ukrainian biological laboratories, appears accurate.

    While none of the emails released on Friday support Russia’s claim that the Ukrainian labs were used to research or create bioweapons, propaganda need only hold a sliver of truth to serve its purpose. And the cache of emails contained on Hunter Biden’s abandoned laptop provides Putin and his comrades enough evidence to seemingly confirm the Russian government’s earlier claim that Hunter Biden helped implement a bioweapon program in Ukraine. This false framing also provides Russia ammunition to justify its attack on its neighbor to the west.

    Russia’s ability to point to the Hunter Biden emails as confirmation of its claims of a biolab in Ukraine raises a serious question with huge national security implications: How did Russia know the day before The Daily Mail’s exclusive that the Hunter Biden’s investment fund, Rosemont Seneca, had invested in Metabiota and been involved in Metabiota’s operations in Ukraine? The timing of events last week suggests Russia has access to the same emails as The Daily Mail or that Vladimir Putin’s agents might well have obtained access to Hunter Biden’s first laptop—the one the president’s son believed Russians had stolen in 2018. In either case, the Biden family corruption documented on the laptops has gone from a potential national security risk to a real one—and in the midst of a war launched by Russia on a country bordering North Atlantic Treaty Organization allies.

    Together, the Biden family, the intelligence agencies, and the corrupt media—social and legacy—hold full responsibility for the danger Americans now face. Biden knew full well how compromised his family was, and that there were two laptops, not one, with evidence of the corruption floating about. Yet Biden lied to the American public, with an assist from the former high-level members of the intelligence community who signed the letter suggesting the laptop scandal represented Russian disinformation.

    Then there is the FBI which, by December 2019, had access to the abandoned laptop and thereby also knew that Hunter believed Russians had stolen his laptop in summer 2018. To date, there has been no indication that the FBI provided Joe Biden a defensive briefing on the national security risk posed by those laptops. Or if FBI agents did brief Biden on the risks in a timely manner, that means he nonetheless lied to the American public and ran for president knowing the propaganda at Putin’s fingertips.

    Even when coupled with the complicity of former members of the intelligence community, all of Joe Biden’s lies would mean nothing if the media had done its job and reported the story when it still matter. It’s too late now, however: Biden is our commander in chief and Putin potentially holds a cache of compromising information perfect for propaganda purposes.


    Margot Cleveland is a senior contributor to The Federalist. She is also a contributor to National Review Online, the Washington Examiner, Aleteia, and Townhall.com, and has been published in the Wall Street Journal and USA Today. Cleveland is a lawyer and a graduate of the Notre Dame Law School, where she earned the Hoynes Prize—the law school’s highest honor. She later served for nearly 25 years as a permanent law clerk for a federal appellate judge on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Cleveland is a former full-time university faculty member and now teaches as an adjunct from time to time. As a stay-at-home homeschooling mom of a young son with cystic fibrosis, Cleveland frequently writes on cultural issues related to parenting and special-needs children. Cleveland is on Twitter at @ProfMJCleveland. The views expressed here are those of Cleveland in her private capacity.

    8 Joe Biden Scandals Inside Hunter Biden’s MacBook That Corporate Media Just Admitted Is Legit


    Reported BY: MARGOT CLEVELAND MARCH 22, 2022

    Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/03/22/8-joe-biden-scandals-inside-hunter-bidens-macbook-that-corporate-media-just-admitted-is-legit/

    Biden speaking to reporters

    Last week, The New York Times quietly acknowledged that the emails recovered from the MacBook Hunter Biden abandoned at a Delaware computer store were authentic. The admission came nearly a year-and-a-half late, after the corrupt media — legacy and social — buried the scandal the New York Post broke just weeks before the November election.

    Merely admitting the laptop is legitimate is not enough. Rather, by concurring in the authenticity of the laptop and the emails, the supposed standard-bearers of journalism have also implicitly acknowledged the validity of the scandals spawn by the porn-filled MacBook. And notwithstanding the salacious source of the documentary evidence of the scandals, the scandals are not about Hunter Biden: They are about now-President Biden.

    Here are the eight Joe Biden scandals deserving further coverage.

    1. Pay-to-Play in Ukraine

    The most obvious scandal bared by the emails and text messages contained on Hunter’s laptop concerns the influence profiteering Joe Biden apparently participated in during his eight years as Barack Obama’s vice president, with Ukraine featuring heavily in the pay-to-play scheme.

    The New York Times, in its likely “get ahead of the story,” coverage from last week, touched on the Ukrainian angle by noting Hunter’s connection to Burisma and then quoting emails recovered from the laptop indicating the younger Biden leveraged his dad’s position — then as vice president. But the Times’ surface coverage of the Burisma scandal doesn’t nearly suffice.

    Surface it was: The Times made no mention of Hunter’s appointment to Burisma Holdings Board of Directors at a reported salary of $50,000 per month during his dad’s time as vice president. Hunter Biden had no experience in energy. So, a deep-dive on the entire Biden-Burisma connection is a first step.

    2. China Gets in the Game

    Ukraine is but a patch on the influence-peddling undertaken by Hunter on behalf of “the big guy,” as the younger Biden referred to his dad. China also played a large role in the family enterprise, as demonstrated by, again, passing coverage in November 2021. Then, the Times reported, in brief, that Hunter Biden’s joint global equity firm, the Bohai Harvest Equity Investment Fund, had helped coordinate the purchase by a Chinese mining company of the world’s largest cobalt source in the Congo.

    That deal gave China control over a huge chunk of the world’s known cobalt supplies — an ingredient necessary to make electric car batteries. And the role of Hunter Biden’s company, Bohai, in the transaction again connects directly to Joe Biden, as Hunter reportedly launched that new joint enterprise with Chinese business partners less than two weeks after he traveled to China on Air Force Two with his then-vice president father.

    In exploring this scandal, the press needs to push beyond the emails recovered from Hunter’s abandoned laptop, and do what Tucker Carlson did when the pay-to-play scandal first surfaced: talk to Hunter’s former business partner Tony Bobulinski. Bobulinski provides further proof that this scandal reaches the top of the Biden family.

    3. Moscow, Kazakhstan, and More

    While Ukraine and China likely hold the most significant revelations, once those threads are pulled, investigators should move on to Moscow, which according to a Senate report, holds another possible scandal. That report documents that Hunter also received a combined $3.5 million from the wife of the former Moscow mayor, a Kazakhstan investor, and several other individuals. After all, there is no reason to think that a person willing to let his son sell access to the vice president of the United States would close the money train to just a few countries.

    4. Ukraine’s Firing of the Prosecutor Investigating Burisma

    With the elite media now deigning coverage of Hunter’s laptop appropriate, the public knows the Burisma scandal was real and threatened to be spectacularly devastating to the elder Biden. That makes questions concerning then-Vice President Joe Biden’s demands that Ukraine fire the state prosecutor who was reportedly investigating Burisma ripe to revisit.

    That prosecutor, Viktor Shokin, was fired, according to statements Joe Biden made during a 2018 event, after Biden threatened to withhold a billion-dollar loan guarantee if the Ukrainian government refused to ax Shokin. A video of the event captured Biden recounting the event:

    I said, I’m telling you, you’re not getting the billion dollars. I said, you’re not getting the billion. I’m going to be leaving here in, I think it was about six hours. I looked at them and said, ‘I’m leaving in six hours.’ If the prosecutor is not fired, you’re not getting the money. Well, son of a b-tch. He got fired. And they put in place someone who was solid at the time.

    While the Obama administration attempted to spin Biden’s push for the firing of Shokin, by claiming the international community had demanded Ukraine terminate the state prosecutor, a State Department official contradicted that claim during congressional testimony. George Kent, who worked on issues related to Ukraine at the State Department, reportedly told lawmakers it was the Obama administration that “spearheaded the efforts to have Shokin removed from his position as the top federal prosecutor in Ukraine.”

    Biden needs to answer questions anew over his threats to withhold money from Ukraine unless the country removed the state prosecutor responsible for investigating Burisma. Democrats have impeached a president for less.

    5. Obama-Biden Administration Ignoring Conflicts of Interest

    Biden also needs to answer questions about his decision to ignore the clear conflicts of interest involved with him negotiating with the same countries Hunter was shaking down. Of course, since “the big guy” was in on the scam, bowing out over conflicts of interest is the lesser of the evils, but it is still worth investigating to assess how Biden handled the concerns raised by the Obama administration’s State Department.

    Here, the testimony of the State Department official charged with issues related to Ukraine again proves significant. Kent told lawmakers that after learning Hunter sat on the board of Burisma, he raised concerns with the vice president’s office about the relationship.

    “I raised my concerns that I had heard that Hunter Biden was on the board of a company owned by somebody that the U.S. Government had spent money trying to get tens of millions of dollars back and that could create the perception of a conflict of interest,” Kent testified before House members in October of 2019. “The message that I recall hearing back was that the vice president’s son Beau was dying of cancer and that there was no further bandwidth to deal with family-related issues at that time … That was the end of that conversation.”

    The question for now-President Biden, then, is whether anyone in his office raised concerns about the clear conflicts-of-interest with him personally, and if so, why did Biden ignore the problem?  

    6. The Intelligence Community’s Briefing of Biden

    Another scandal reaching President Biden concerns his interactions with the intelligence community after the FBI, and presumably the CIA and other such agencies, learned in December of 2019, that Hunter Biden believed Russians had stolen Hunter’s laptop, rendering the Bidens susceptible to blackmail.

    Here, it is important to understand that there are two separate Hunter Biden laptops at issue. The most-discussed laptop was actually the second laptop. That laptop was the one Hunter had abandoned at the Delaware repair shop. Then, after the repair shop owner discovered concerning material on the MacBook, the store owner handed it to the FBI in December of 2019. The owner of the repair shop, however, had first made a copy of the hard drive, which resulted in The New York Post’s coverage in October 2020.

    But there was another laptop — one Hunter believed Russians had stolen from him when he was binging on drugs with prostitutes in the summer of 2018 in Las Vegas. While the public did not learn about the existence of this earlier laptop until August of 2021, the FBI knew about it as early as December 2019, when they took possession of the second laptop Hunter had left at the repair store.

    Among other material contained on the second laptop was a video of Biden recounting the circumstances of his first laptop disappearing with some Russians. Significantly, on that video Hunter Biden said his first laptop contained a ton of material leaving him susceptible to blackmail, since his father was “running for president” and Hunter talked “about it all the time.”

    It is inconceivable that the FBI and the intelligence communities did not brief Biden on this discovery and the risk of blackmail, given that former FBI Director James Comey briefed Trump on the fake Steele dossier. On second thought, that is the initial question reporters should ask the president: “Did the FBI brief you, Mr. President, on the fact that Hunter believed Russians had stolen a laptop containing compromising information?”

    From there, an inquiring press should investigate to ensure that Joe Biden did not direct the intelligence community to bury this national security risk to protect himself or his son.

    7. Possible Collusion to Interfere in the 2020 Election

    An honest press should also investigate whether now-President Biden or anyone connected to his then-presidential campaign pressured reporters, media outlets, or companies such as Twitter and Facebook to censor the Hunter Biden story. And what about the “fifty former intelligence officials” who publicly declared the laptop resembled a Russian disinformation campaign—something clearly untrue? Did Biden or his campaign coordinate with those individuals, several of whom had endorsed the Democratic candidate, in the release of the letter?

    Given that polls show that 17 percent of Joe Biden voters would not have voted for him in 2020, if they had known about the Biden family scandals, the collective burying of the laptop scandal represents the most significant interference in elections ever seen in our country. So, “Did Biden or his campaign have anything to do with the decision to kill the New York Post’s reporting on Hunter’s MacBook?” And “What about the ‘fifty former intelligence officials?’”

    From there the follow-ups flow quickly: “Who was involved in the push to silence the story and who were the executives or ‘journalists’ who bowed to the demands?” “Who coordinated with the intelligence officials?” “Were any threats or promises made?” “What were they?” “What did Joe Biden know?” “What about other Democrats and the Democratic National Committee?”

    8. Joe Biden Is a ‘Lying Dog-Faced Pony Soldier’

    The final Joe Biden scandal the press should push President Biden to answer concerns his lies to the American public. While there are too many to count, two merit further questioning.

    First, the media should demand Biden answer for lying to the country when he seethed, “I have never discussed, with my son or my brother or with anyone else, anything having to do with their businesses. Period.” The evidence overwhelmingly shows that Biden not only knew of the family business deals but was part of them.

    The second bold-faced fabrication from Biden came during his pre-election debate with Trump, when Trump raised “the laptop from hell.” When Trump asked Biden if he was saying the “laptop is now another Russia, Russia, Russia hoax?” the then-Democratic candidate replied, “That’s exactly what [I] was told.”

    Unlikely. Biden also countered with this doozy, which again raises the question of whether Biden had a role in the intelligence officials’ statement:

    There are 50 former national intelligence folks who said that what he’s accusing me of is a Russian plant. They have said that this has all the … five former heads of the CIA, both parties, say what he’s saying is a bunch of garbage. Nobody believes it except him and his good friend, Rudy Giuliani.

    We can now add The New York Times to Giuliani. It remains to be seen, though, whether the Old Grey Lady and the other legacy outlets will report on the further scandals the laptop revealed—the ones that reach the president of the United States.


    Margot Cleveland is a senior contributor to The Federalist. She is also a contributor to National Review Online, the Washington Examiner, Aleteia, and Townhall.com, and has been published in the Wall Street Journal and USA Today. Cleveland is a lawyer and a graduate of the Notre Dame Law School, where she earned the Hoynes Prize—the law school’s highest honor. She later served for nearly 25 years as a permanent law clerk for a federal appellate judge on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Cleveland is a former full-time university faculty member and now teaches as an adjunct from time to time. As a stay-at-home homeschooling mom of a young son with cystic fibrosis, Cleveland frequently writes on cultural issues related to parenting and special-needs children. Cleveland is on Twitter at @ProfMJCleveland. The views expressed here are those of Cleveland in her private capacity.

    Defense Expert Spots Massive Issue with Russia Trucks, Indicates Entire War’s About to Change


    Reported By Elizabeth Stauffer | March 21, 2022

    Read more at https://www.westernjournal.com/defense-expert-spots-massive-issue-russia-trucks-indicates-entire-wars-change/

    Over the course of his long career with the Department of Defense, Trent Telenko spent 10 years as an Army vehicle auditor.

    Based in Sealy, Texas, he received and inspected the steady stream of military vehicles damaged in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. This experience has given Telenko an eye for details that others could easily miss as well as a unique perspective on Russia’s progress in Ukraine.

    In early March, Telenko saw on social media a photograph of a Russian Pantsir-S1 missile system located near the Ukrainian city of Kherson. His eyes went immediately to the system’s tires. Rather than using high-quality, more expensive tires that could support the tremendous weight of the Pantsir-S1, the Russian army had opted for cheaper, low-quality, Chinese-made tires. He also noticed they were in terrible shape because they had not been properly maintained.

    In a widely read Twitter thread, Telenko identified the problems caused by the Russian army’s failure to properly maintain not only this specific Pantsir, but neglect of the entire fleet.

    Telenko’s analysis captured the attention of media outlets from The Economist to ABC News.

    In the clip below, Telenko explained to ABC anchors how the Russian military’s inattention to critical safety measures is bogging its forces down and undermining its progress in the war. He noted that he “could tell at a glance” what was wrong with the tires on Russian trucks: Neglected maintenance that would destroy the usefulness of the army’s vehicles.

    Check out the whole interview. It’s worth watching.

    Telenko published a new thread on Saturday in which he discussed “Operational Attrition,” a concept he defines as the “loss of vehicles without a shot being fired.”

    “That is, just by operating vehicles, you lose some of them because they break,” he wrote. “This gets a lot worse in combat. Each mile traveled by a military truck in war is between 10 and 20 miles wear. This is simple. Truck drivers abuse trucks because they don’t want to die.”

    Telenko participated in three U.S. Army “Reset” programs from 2003 to 2008. The goal was to repair damaged FMTV trucks (family of medium tactical vehicles). And he was tasked with performing “induction inspections of IED blast damaged trucks.”

    Describing their condition, he wrote, “None of those vehicles ran, but mainly because they had been picked over for parts. There were not that many miles on them, but goodness was there oil leaks, sludge, leaky radiators, carbon build ups & the suspensions were beat to h–l. Cab glass was noticeable by its absence.”

    “This was in an Army that has professional NCO’s that lived, breathed and ate preventive maintenance as a religious catechism. And the US Army enforced rest periods for its truck drivers because it cared enough about having men & equipment future operations,” he explained.

    The Russian Army doesn’t do any of these things, he wrote. And for the past 10 years, they were barely maintained. Now, these same trucks are being overloaded with artillery and ammunition and sent into the war zone.

    Here’s what can and has gone wrong for the Russians.

    Telenko concludes that the lack of professional maintenance and wear, unprofessional use by undertrained troops and soldier exhaustion has already and will continue to cause high levels of “operational attrition” in their truck fleets. The “details” that are being ignored will lead to massive issues.

    He predicts in six to eight weeks, the entire Russian Army military truck fleet will be “deadlined.”

    “Between the end of April and Mid-May 2022, the Ukrainian Army will be able to counter-attack EVERYWHERE. Because there will be NOWHERE more than 20 miles/30 km inside Ukraine where Russian troops won’t be out of food and low on ammunition.”

    Do you think Ukraine can turn back the Russian invasion?Yes No

    Completing this poll entitles you to The Western Journal news updates free of charge. You may opt out at anytime. You also agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

    Let’s hope Telenko is right and pray that the Ukrainians can continue to hang on.

    In February, U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Mark Milley told lawmakers a full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine could take Kyiv in 72 hours. Nearly four weeks after the Russian invasion began Feb. 24, the Russian military has managed to reduce some cities to rubble and resorted to indiscriminate bombing and brutal tactics, yet the Ukrainian people are still standing.

    The formidable Russian Army which greatly outnumbers the Ukrainian military in men, artillery and equipment isn’t quite as mighty as the world had thought.

    Although the government of Russian President Vladimir Vladimir Putin had unlimited time to prepare for this invasion, Putin apparently grossly underestimated his opponent. His military commanders might have failed to plan the logistics of a protracted war, without which, even the strongest army will falter.

    Elizabeth Stauffer, Contributor,

    Elizabeth is a contract writer at The Western Journal. Her articles have appeared on many conservative websites including RedState, Newsmax, The Federalist, Bongino.com, HotAir, MSN and RealClearPolitics. Please follow Elizabeth on Twitter.

    @StaufferVaughn

    Ann Coulter Op-ed: Dem Nightmare: What if the War Ends Before November?


    Commentary by Ann Coulter | Posted: Mar 16, 2022

    Read more at https://townhall.com/columnists/anncoulter/2022/03/16/dem-nightmare-what-if-the-war-ends-before-november—p–n2604665/

    The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com, and WhatDidYouSay.org.

    Dem Nightmare: What if the War Ends Before November?

    Source: AP Photo/Patrick Semansky

    Great news for Joe Biden. After months of abysmal public approval numbers, President Biden’s favorability among registered voters has soared by 2 points to 45%! And all he had to do was bring us to the brink of World War III.

    The media are thrilled with the possibility of nuclear war with Russia. Catastrophes are terrific for ratings, and flood-the-zone coverage of a war between two faraway countries that has almost zero effect on the lives of most Americans allows journalists to act like deep-think, geopolitical strategists (after having quickly looked up “Ukraine” on Wikipedia).

    They dragged out the COVID panic porn for two straight years. By now, the only people still interested in pandemic updates are hysterical liberal women in Manhattan claiming to have “long-haul COVID.”

    The national pastime has segued seamlessly from watching TV anchors cry on TV about the coronavirus to watching TV anchors cry on TV about the fate of Ukrainian children.

    Of course, when American kids are murdered expressly as a result of our own government’s policies, the journalism protocol is: No crying, no coverage.

    There will be no tears for the 5-year-old Florida girl killed in October when an illegal alien from Guatemala, Ernesto Lopez Morales, tanked up on six 32-ounce beers, then plowed into the little girl and her mother as he was driving to get more beer.

    Nor for Texas teenager Adrienne Sophia Exum, killed instantly one Sunday afternoon in 2020 when Heriberto Fuerte-Padilla, an illegal alien from Mexico, smashed into the car she was driving, then fled the scene. There’s even some news: The Biden administration announced that Fuerte-Padilla will not be deported.

    And there will be no weeping for the still-unidentified mother and daughter, aged 59 and 22, killed last December when a human smuggler (a “U.S. citizen,” aka “anchor baby”) carrying six illegals across the border into Texas, sped through a stop sign and T-boned the pair.

    I’m sure it’s just a coincidence, but the media’s obsessive focus on Ukraine is terrific for the interests of the Democratic Party. Recall that, in his 2012 book, “Left Turn: How Liberal Media Bias Distorts the American Mind,” then-UCLA professor Tim Groseclose demonstrated that media bias alone costs Republicans about 8 to 10 percentage points in elections.

    And that was 2012. One can only imagine what it is in post-Trump 2022. If only we could return to the junior varsity media bias of 2012!

    Until the war in Ukraine, the Democrats were facing midterms after having spent the previous two years mandating masks and an endless series of vaccinations — even for the vaccinated or previously infected.

    Democrats flung open the border to illegal alien murderers, drug dealers, gang members and welfare recipients.

    Democratic district attorneys have turned city after city into feces-smeared murdertopias that make Charles Bronson’s “Death Wish” look like “The Sound of Music.”

    These days, the left’s main casus belli is teaching little kids about anal sex, transgenders and the inherent evil of white people.

    What could even Stalin’s media do with that record?

    Option 1) Implement a collective mind wipe, perhaps through an electromagnetic pulse, to erase voters’ memory of everything that’s happened since Joe Biden was sworn in.

    Option 2) WAR! (Someplace in the world that’s not here.)

    What crisis at our border? We’re reporting on a WAR.

    How can you talk about murder rates when CHILDREN ARE DYING IN UKRAINE?

    What vaccine mandates? COVID is over. Now we’re talking about war!

    Everything bad that’s happening is Putin’s fault! He’s like Hitler!

    Talk about Russian collusion! Putin gave Trump Facebook ads; he’s giving Biden a military invasion.

    By now, the media have whipped the public into such a frenzy over Ukraine that a majority of Americans want the U.S. to start shooting down Russian planes, starting World War III with nuclear armed power.

    A small price to pay for Democratic dominance.

    But much like American military interventions around the globe, things don’t always go as planned.

    The Democrats’ media helpers might want to recall President George H.W. Bush’s 89% favorable rating in 1991 — the highest presidential job approval rating then on record, according to Gallup.

    Those astronomical numbers came as a result of the conclusion of the Persian Gulf War, when we went to war with Saddam Hussein because he had invaded neighboring Kuwait — violating that nation’s sacred sovereignty! — and proceeded to commit unspeakable war crimes, including using poison gas. The first week of that war, Bush’s poll numbers shot from 64% to 82%.

    Republicans had a lock on the next year’s presidential contest. No serious Democrats were willing to challenge him, and the party ended up with a horny hick from Arkansas as their nominee.

    And then it all collapsed. By Election Day 1992, Bush’s public approval rating was down to a pathetic 34%. The h*rny hick won the election, and Bush became an embarrassing one-term president.

    On the military side, at least the Middle East was finally at peace. We never heard a peep out of Hussein again. Wait — what happened?

    Today’s Politically INCORRECT Cartoon by A.F. Branco


    A.F. Branco Cartoon – Green New Sham

    A.F. BRANCO | on March 17, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-green-new-sham/

    Putin loves it when anti-American environmentalist’s extremist work to eliminate fossil fuels.

    Environmentalist Putin Puppets
    Political cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2022

    Donations/Tips accepted and appreciated – $1.00 – $5.00 – $25.00 – $50.00 – $100 – it all helps to fund this website and keep the cartoons coming. Also Venmo @AFBranco – THANK YOU!

    A.F. Branco has taken his two greatest passions, (art and politics) and translated them into the cartoons that have been popular all over the country, in various news outlets including “Fox News”, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, and “The Washington Post.” He has been recognized by such personalities as Dinesh D’Souza, James Woods, Sarah Palin, Larry Elder, Lars Larson, Rush Limbaugh, and shared by President Donald Trump.

    Washington Is Ramping Up Its Campaign to Draw NATO Into War With Russia


    REPORTED BY: JOHN DANIEL DAVIDSON | MARCH 16, 2022

    Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/03/16/washington-is-ramping-up-its-campaign-to-draw-nato-into-war-with-russia/

    S300 missile system

    By now it should be obvious that a concerted and bipartisan effort is underway in Washington to escalate U.S. involvement in the Ukraine war. This effort has been ongoing since the war began three weeks ago, but now it’s entering a new and dangerous phase. In a letter sent Tuesday to Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin and Secretary of State Anthony Blinken, a half-dozen top Republican lawmakers called for the Biden administration to provide Ukraine with “Soviet- or Russian-made strategic and tactical air defense systems and associated radars to Ukraine.”

    That means long-range surface-to-air missiles, like the Soviet-made S-300 system, which is designed to shoot down enemy aircraft and intercept ballistic missiles. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has urged the United States to help Ukraine acquire S-300 air defense systems from countries that have them, like North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) members Bulgaria, Greece, and Slovakia, and he might do so again on Wednesday when he addresses Congress.

    In action, S-300 air defense systems look something like this:

    The provision of such heavy weaponry to Ukraine, whether by the United States or our NATO allies, would represent an unprecedented level of direct military support for Ukraine that would undoubtedly — and rightly — be interpreted by Moscow as a sharp escalation by the West. 

    Top Republican lawmakers, though, are undeterred by such concerns. The letter, signed by GOP Sens. James Inhofe, Marco Rubio, James Risch, and Reps. Mike Rogers, Michael Turner, and Michael McCaul, also calls for an array of other weapons to be sent immediately to Ukraine, including more Javelin antitank and Stinger antiaircraft missiles, which the United States has been providing to Ukraine in large quantities, as well as myriad small arms, ammunition, and other supplies.  It also calls for the delivery to Ukraine of Polish MiG-29 fighter jets “in the near term,” and for the United States to “re-engage Warsaw” on ways to backfill those aircraft. The Republican signatories then declare: “We encourage the department to re-evaluate the flawed conclusion that the transfer of these fighter jets to Ukraine would be ‘escalatory’ in comparison to the weapons systems that have already been delivered to Ukraine by the U.S. and our allies and partners.”

    On the contrary, it would indeed be escalatory simply because the weapons that have already been delivered to Ukraine are nothing compared to, say, dozens of advanced fighter jets. Poland certainly considers such a course of action “escalatory.”

    After all, the entire fighter jet transfer scheme was abandoned last week when Poland, responding to some loose talk from Blinken about giving a “green light” to the transfer, offered to deploy its MiG-29s to Ramstein Air Base in Germany and place them at the disposal of the United States. Poland was essentially asking the United States to bear the risks of sending fighter jets into Ukraine, which Moscow would almost certainly consider an act of war. The Biden administration, recognizing these risks, declined Poland’s offer.

    None of this seems to daunt these Republican lawmakers, though. They seem to think we should press ahead and arm the Ukrainians with everything short of NATO soldiers and nuclear weapons. The idea of sending long-range surface-to-air missiles to Ukraine is essentially identical to the MiG-29 transfer idea: funnel advanced weapons systems to Ukraine but somehow maintain the fiction that the United States and NATO are non-belligerents. At some point, we will cross the line of belligerence, and whether and when we cross that line isn’t something we alone get to decide.

    It’s not enough, as these GOP lawmakers are doing, to wave away the risks that such policies carry. Moscow clearly views this war as existential, and it will not simply allow NATO to funnel increasingly more powerful weapons into Ukraine. As I argued last week, this isn’t Afghanistan or Syria. Controlling Ukraine is central to Moscow’s conception of its national security, and it won’t simply walk away from this war without widening it first.

    Lawmakers in Washington aren’t the only ones who refuse to see this. Open the editorial pages of the Wall Street Journal these days and you’ll see the same kind of hand-waving over the risks of escalation. On Tuesday, the Journal published an op-ed by Douglas Feith and John Hannah (along with a supporting editorial) that argued for a “humanitarian airlift” for Ukraine without acknowledging the risks involved.

    What, exactly, would that look like? An international airlift, openly organized and funded by the United States, would “provide food, medicine and other nonmilitary supplies for days, weeks and maybe longer,” write Feith and Hannah, who both served as national-security officials in the George W. Bush administration. “Countries viewed as not hostile to Russia — perhaps Brazil, Egypt, India and the United Arab Emirates — could take the lead in flying planes into Ukraine.”

    But since NATO and the United States aren’t willing to impose a no-fly zone (yet) it’s hard to imagine pilots from those non-NATO countries will be lining up to volunteer for the mission. What happens if they get shot down?

    Feith and Hannah don’t say. Russian President Vladimir Putin, they argue, “would either consent and facilitate distribution of supplies or provoke more denunciations of Russia for its inhumanity.” Or he might shoot down a supply plane, launch a missile attack on the NATO airbase where the airlift is based, or do any number of things to widen the war in response.

    Feith and Hannah, along with the Journal’s editorial board, make no serious attempt to grapple with the risks involved in such an operation, let alone the potential for rapid escalation once things go sideways. Like the aforementioned Republican lawmakers, they refuse to engage in even the most rudimentary risk analysis.

    Why? One possible explanation is that perhaps the people making these arguments want the United States to get involved as a belligerent, and don’t really believe their hand-waving about the risks associated with their schemes. Feith and Hannah, for example, laughably assert that there is “little to no downside” to their proposal, which they also note “doesn’t preclude efforts to arm the Ukrainians better, or eventually to establish a no-fly zone, but because the airlift is far less risky it should be more readily doable.”

    Well, yes, a humanitarian airlift into an active warzone is certainly less risky than a no-fly zone, which is indistinguishable from going to war with Russia, but that doesn’t mean it’s risk-free, much less prudent. But maybe that’s the point: dial up the risk and see what happens.

    As the war in Ukraine stretches into its third week, with heavy Russian bombardment of Ukrainian cities intensifying and civilian causalities mounting, we’re going to hear more and more arguments out of Washington that the United States and NATO need to do more, that we can’t stand aside and let Putin do as he pleases in Ukraine. The people making these arguments will deny that their proposals for aiding Ukraine, however unprecedented, could risk escalation with or retaliation from Moscow. They will not even engage that question in good faith.

    Instead, they will insist, with the force of what they believe is moral authority, that we keep plunging down a slippery slope that eventually leads to war between NATO and Russia — and that we do so without even acknowledging what we’re doing.


    John Daniel Davidson is a senior editor at The Federalist. His writing has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, the Claremont Review of Books, The New York Post, and elsewhere. Follow him on Twitter, @johnddavidson.

    Here’s Why Everyone Is Talking About Biolabs In Ukraine


    Reported by DYLAN HOUSMAN | HEALTHCARE REPORTER | March 14, 2022

    Read more at https://dailycaller.com/2022/03/14/ukraine-biolabs-victoria-nuland-russia-bioweapons-chemical-weapons/

    Here's Why Everyone Is Talking About Biolabs In Ukraine
    (Photo by Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images)

    Russia has asserted numerous justifications for its invasion of Ukraine, and one of them is finally gaining traction with some observers: the allegation that the United States was developing bioweapons at labs in Ukraine to use against Moscow. It’s true that there are bioresearch facilities in Ukraine, some of which are partnered with the Department of Defense, as Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland admitted to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee last week. But there is no evidence that the labs were being used to develop biological weapons, or that Russia was under such direct threat from them that they needed to invade Ukraine.

    Russian President Vladimir Putin used the Kremlin’s media machine to try to justify his war in Ukraine in multiple ways. First, Moscow said it needed to protect ethnic Russians in the Donbas region who were facing a “genocide” from Kyiv. They also claimed that they needed to “de-Nazify” Ukraine, a country led by a Jewish president and home to more than one million Holocaust victims. There was also the claim that the war was really about NATO expansion, as well as an alleged false flag attack to frame Ukraine as the aggressors against Russia.

    Those narratives, with some exception for the NATO complaint, largely failed to gain traction in the West. However, after the war had already began, Putin pivoted to the bioweapons claim. According to the Kremlin, the United States wants to use bioweapons created in Ukrainian labs to attack Russia, including by infecting birds with them and releasing them into Russian territory.

    The narrative isn’t new. The same Russian Ministry of Defense spokesman who said the U.S. is creating chemical weapons to selectively target Slavs said years ago that the U.S. was funding bioweapons research in Georgia, which Russia invaded in 2008. (RELATED: Yet Another Shortage Looms Over Biden’s Presidency — It Might Be The World’s Biggest)

    In 2005, the United States and Ukraine reached an agreement to work together to dismantle or secure Soviet-era bioweapons left behind at facilities in Ukraine. The Pentagon’s Cooperative Threat Reduction Program (CTR) has been working with former Soviet republics for 30 years to clean up biohazards left behind in their countries, from places like Ukraine to Uzbekistan.

    The day after Russia invaded Ukraine, Robert Pope, the head of the CTR, did an interview with the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. This occurred before Moscow’s propaganda campaign about Ukrainian labs ramped up again. Pope explained that he was concerned Russian attacks could knock out power leading to security breaches at biolabs in Ukraine, or that Russia could take over some of the labs and gain access to dangerous pathogens inside them.

    “I would say from every facility that we have worked with them in, we have confidence that as long as the electrical power is turned on and the people we have trained are present at the facility, the biosafety officers, that these pathogens are safe and secure to international standards,” Pope said. “Should these facilities be damaged by onflict, that could change.”

    “Should Russian forces occupy a city with one of these facilities, we are concerned that Russia will fabricate ‘evidence’ of nefarious activity in an attempt to lend credibility to their ongoing disinformation about these facilities.”

    Pope said there are various activities happening at the 26 labs in Ukraine the U.S. partners with, six of which receive direct support from the Pentagon. Some are destroying or securing former Soviet bioweapons. But some are simply used to conduct vaccine and disease research on pathogens. He did make clear that there is no new bioweapons research occurring at any of the facilities and said any claim that there is is a lie: “There is no place that still has any of the sort of infrastructure for researching or producing biological weapons.”

    “Scientists being scientists, it wouldn’t surprise me if some of these strain collections in some of these laboratories still have pathogen strains that go all the way back to the origins of that program,” Pope said. He added that the CTR and Ukraine, before the war started, had been working toward an agreement for Ukraine to reduce the amount of dangerous pathogens it was studying for safety reasons.

    The World Health Organization recently told Reuters that it, too, had told Ukraine to destroy some of the pathogens it was researching in its biolabs due to safety concerns. (RELATED: Fox News’ Benjamin Hall Injured Outside Of Kyiv, Anchor Announces)

    According to the Pentagon, Russia took control of two Ukrainian labs in 2014 when it made its initial incursion on Crimea and the Donbas. Now, American intelligence officials are reportedly concerned that Russia will gain control of more labs and potentially get access to the dangerous pathogens inside some of them. If they do, there are worries that Russia will stage a false flag attack to frame the United States and Ukraine as chemical weapons users.

    A similar concern about a false flag attack was shared by the Biden administration before the invasion of Ukraine began. The State Department alleged that Russia could produce a video framing Ukraine for an attack on Russia or the Donbas, justifying a Russian response.

    Russia deployed this same tactic in Syria, where it supports the regime of dictator Bashar Al-Assad. When Assad used chemical weapons on civilian populations, Russia sometimes claimed that it was rebel groups using chemical weapons on themselves, not Assad.

    The debate about the biolabs, and the spread of misinformation by some, has sparked an intense debate within American politics. Some on both the right and left have spoken about the issue, from raising legitimate concerns about the potential for a lab-leak during the war to parroting Russian allegations of bioweapons activity. Others have called them conspiracy theorists.

    Republican Utah Sen. Mitt Romney accused former Democratic Hawaii Rep. and presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard of spreading treasonous lies and parroting Kremlin propaganda. Gabbard tweeted a video in which she said there should be a ceasefire in Ukraine until international authorities can secure 25+ U.S.-funded biolabs in Ukraine and destroy the dangerous pathogens within.

    Republican Florida Sen. Marco Rubio and Democratic Virginia Sen. Mark Warner, the top officials on the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, have been working together to debunk falsehoods that the U.S. is funding bioweapons research in Ukraine.

    Some have added the claim that the biolabs in Ukraine were “secret,” or that the United States had been covering up its involvement in the facilities. But that isn’t true either. The 2005 agreement between CTR and Ukraine was public, as are various other documents published by the Pentagon since outlining the work being done at the labs and the funding provided for some of it by the United States. The government has also addressed the allegations of bioweapons research before; in 2020, the U.S. Embassy in Ukraine put out a release to “set the record straight” on bioresearch collaboration between the two countries.

    It was Rubio who asked Nuland about the biolabs during the Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing, sparking much of the controversy being dealt with now. Critically, Nuland confirmed that there are biolabs in Ukraine with dangerous pathogens in them that could be exploited by Russia.

    Rubio also asked Nuland if there is a biological weapons attack were to take place in Ukraine, potentially stemming from one of these facilities, if Russia would be responsible. “There is no doubt in my mind, Senator. And it is classic Russian technique to blame on the other guy what they’re planning to do themselves.”

    ‘Cowardly And Pathetic’: Newt Gingrich Rips Biden Administration, Says US Leadership Is Weak Trying To Handle Putin


    Reported by NICOLE SILVERIO | CONTRIBUTOR | March 15, 2022

    Read more at https://dailycaller.com/2022/03/15/cowardly-pathetic-newt-gingrich-rips-biden-administration-leadership-weak-putin/

    Newt Gingrich on "The Faulkner Focus"
    [Screenshot/Rumble/Fox News]

    Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich ripped the leadership of President Joe Biden’s administration in handling Russian President Vladimir Putin on a Tuesday interview for “The Faulkner Focus.”

    “We should know after Afghanistan, this is the most timid, cowardly and pathetic administration in modern American history,” Gingrich said. “There aren’t any words to express it. If you watch Kamala Harris in Europe, it was an embarrassment to have that person represent the United States because she’s so totally, utterly incompetent. And I think the Europeans have taken our measure. I don’t think anybody in Europe looks to the United States right now to provide any leadership of any kind.”

    WATCH:

    Gingrich said Biden has not provided “any leadership of any kind,” adding that he thought the U.S. could defeat Putin if the country could “unleash” the “competent people” in handling the conflict.

    “But instead, we’re intimidated by him [Putin], we’re allowing him to get away with war crimes. These are all war crimes … It’s beyond words if you’re a serious person to try and describe what a complete, utter embarrassing failure Biden is,” he continued.

    “This is not who we are,” host Harris Faulkner replied. “We’re not weak, we’re not.”

    Gingrich agreed the country is not weak, but said that the president is now attempting to buy oil from Venezuela, Iran and Saudi Arabia rather than increasing domestic oil production. (RELATED: Newt Gingrich Rips ‘Lack Of Seriousness’ In Biden Admin By Sending Kamala Harris On Diplomatic Trip) 

    “You can’t be nuttier than this administration,” Gingrich continued. “It combines cowardice and crazy ideas into a really dangerous, historically threatening model. People should really worry about the next three years.”

    The president imposed sanctions on Russia following the invasion of Ukraine and announced a ban on all imports of Russian oil and gas March 8. The administration has received criticism from some lawmakers for not doing enough to aid Ukraine, particularly after the State Department declined to send Polish MiG jets to Ukrainians from an airbase in Ramstein, Germany.

    Vice President Kamala Harris received a wave of backlash for bursting into laugher during a joint press conference Thursday alongside Polish President Andrzej Duda.

    OROZCO: Biden’s Plans With The Maduro Regime Could End In A Fiasco And Crush Venezuelans’ Hopes For Freedom


    Reported by LUIS FRANCISCO OROZCO | CONTRIBUTOR | March 14, 2022

    Read more at https://dailycaller.com/2022/03/14/orozco-bidens-plans-maduro-regime-fiasco-venezuelan-freedom/

    Nicolas Maduro Hosts The Simon Bolivar Journalism National Award Ceremony
    Matias Delacroix/Getty Images

    In an unexpected situation that surprised everyone in Venezuela and Florida, the Biden administration decided to take a u-turn in the White House’s maximum pressure policy against the socialist tyranny of Nicolas Maduro.

    While the world’s eyes watched the violent tragedy taking place in Ukraine, senior U.S. officials arrived in Caracas, the Venezuelan capital, to meet with the Maduro regime. The reasons behind the visit were simple: to liberate nine Americans detained in the country, break the Kremlin-Miraflores alliance and restore the oil commerce with Venezuela so the U.S. can replace the oil it stopped buying from Russia. In exchange the U.S. would ease the sanctions imposed by the former Trump administration against the Venezuelan oil industry. A situation that would legitimize Maduro after being an international pariah for years.

    Basically, the Biden administration is looking for a trifecta with a sweet bonus: the possibility that gas prices won’t go up even more. But, is this really possible? The truth is that the White House could be entering into a significant fiasco that could have some unpleasant consequences for Democrats in the midterm elections, in addition to destroying Venezuela’s hopes for a return to freedom and democracy.

    It is unlikely that Maduro break ties with Putin.

    Believe it or not, Russian dictator Vladimir Putin could have some reasons to feel happy with Maduro’s negotiations with the U.S. After all, Caracas will get more dollars in the short term if everything moves forward, meaning that the Venezuelan regime could finally start paying the massive amount of money that it owes Moscow. On the other hand, establishing any type of alliance with the U.S. doesn’t automatically move you out of Russia’s sphere of influence — just look at the Nicaraguan regime. However, the depth of the Caracas-Moscow alliance makes it quite unlikely that Maduro will break ties with the Kremlin. We’re talking about billions of dollars in weapons, intelligence support, political consulting and a sophisticated mechanism created by Moscow to allow Venezuela’s oil industry to thwart the sanctions and keep selling oil to different countries.

    Moreover, the Kremlin has gathered plenty of “Kompromat” on some of the most important members of the Venezuelan regime, including Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino Lopez, who is known for being a close friend of his Russian counterpart Sergei Shoigu. In addition, Russia currently has control of billions of dollars that top Venezuelan officials and Venezuela’s oil company PDVSA saved in Gazprombank, which decided to freeze this money in 2019 to avoid getting sanctioned by the Trump administration.

    The Venezuelan oil industry is in shambles.

    In 2021, Russia exported 670,000 oil barrels to the U.S. In 2018, which was the last year before the Maduro regime suffered the oil sanctions imposed by the Trump administration, Venezuela managed to export only 586,000. Currently, the total amount of oil barrels that the South American nation produces is about 700,000, but Caracas takes 150,000 for internal use and sends nearly 60,000 to Cuba.

    This way, even in the best-case scenario, the Venezuelan regime won’t be able to fully replace the amount of oil that the U.S. gets from Russia. Even worse, even if the Biden administration relaxes oil sanction on Venezuela, it would do nothing to alleviate the current oil crisis.

    According to Francisco Monaldi, Fellow and Director of the Latin American Energy Program at Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy, if the sanctions imposed against the Kremlin impact Russian oil exports for a long period, the Venezuelan regime could only reach two percent of the world’s supply in no less than five years. To make this happen, the Biden administration would have to cancel all sanctions, while the Venezuelan oil industry would need a significant investment of $12 billion over a seven-year period.

    Turning Venezuelans into the new Cubans.

    In short, we’re talking about a deal that could easily go wrong, and the effect that the Venezuelan oil could have on gas prices will be minimal. Also, negotiating with a socialist tyrant like Maduro won’t necessarily move him away from Russia or China, so the U.S. might end up financing a band of human rights violators just to get an insignificant amount of oil.

    A negotiated transition probably won’t solve the Venezuelan situation. Like it happened in Nicaragua in the early 1990s, this would only change the tyrant but not the political system. However, guaranteeing free and fair elections in the shortest time possible is a mandatory demand that U.S. officials must include at the negotiating table. Otherwise, President Joe Biden would be doing something worse than what former President Barack Obama did with Cuba.

    He would be stabilizing the worst tyranny in Latin America’s modern history — the socialist dystopia that is responsible for the second-largest migrant crisis in the world and has been formally accused by the U.S. State Department of narcoterrorism. It also hosts and protects terrorist organizations such as Hezbollah and ELN and is being investigated by the International Criminal Court for crimes against humanity.

    In the 2020 presidential election, a majority of Venezuelans in the U.S. voted for then-president Donald Trump. However, with Biden’s latest actions with Maduro, a Democratic administration could be about to turn the Venezuelan community in the U.S. into a potential Republican voter base.

    That’s what happened with Cubans after the failed Bay of Pigs invasion. But in this case, it would come after condemning a nation’s future in the name of a deal that looks flawed from every angle.

    Luis Orozco is a Venezuelan journalist and political analyst.

    Democrats Aim To Increase Taxes On Big Oil Amid Record Gas Prices


    Reported by THOMAS CATENACCI, ENERGY & ENVIRONMENT REPORTER | March 10, 2022

    Read more at https://dailycaller.com/2022/03/10/democrats-aim-to-increase-taxes-on-big-oil-amid-record-gas-prices/

    Prices Of Gas And Consumer Goods Rise As Inflation Hits 40-Year High
    Joe Raedle/Getty Images

    A group of House and Senate Democrats introduced legislation Thursday that would implement a new tax to prevent Big Oil corporations from “profiteering.” The effort, led by Rhode Island Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse and California Rep. Ro Khanna, would introduce the Big Oil Windfall Profits Tax to the U.S. tax code, according to the announcement. Whitehouse said the tax would ensure the world’s largest oil companies don’t take advantage of the ongoing Ukraine crisis to boost gas prices and rake in greater profits, adding that American consumers have “seen this script before.”

    “We cannot allow the fossil fuel industry to once again collect a massive windfall by taking advantage of an international crisis,” Whitehouse said in a statement. “I propose sending Big Oil’s big windfall back to the hardworking people who paid for it at the gas pump.”

    The lawmakers noted that Big Oil companies have recently reported record profits. In 2021, Chevron reported an annual profit of $15.6 billion, Exxon Mobil reported $23 billion in profit and BP reported $12.8 billion in annual profits. (RELATED: BP Oil Rakes In Biggest Profit Since 2013)

    Under the legislation, oil companies that produce or import at least 300,000 barrels of oil per day will be hit with a tax worth 50% of the difference between the current cost of oil and the average cost between 2015-2019. Smaller oil companies, which account for the majority of domestic energy production, would be exempt from the tax, according to the announcement.

    Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse speaks during a Senate Judiciary hearing on Sept. 15. (Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)

    Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse speaks during a Senate Judiciary hearing on Sept. 15. (Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)

    Revenue generated from the windfall tax would then be rebated back to Americans as a tax deduction, according to the announcement. Single filers would receive about $240 each per year and joint filers would receive $360 per year when the price of oil hits $120 per barrel. There would be a phase out for single filers earning more than $75,000 per year as well as $150,000 for joint filers, the announcement said.

    “Americans want to put pressure on Putin, but they need help with high gas prices,” Oregon Sen. Jeff Merkley, one of the bill’s co-sponsors, said. “So let’s tax oil companies’ war profiteering and send gasoline rebate checks to Americans.”

    Overall, Democrats projected the bill to generate $45 billion per year if the price of oil stayed at $120 per barrel. (RELATED: ANALYSIS: White House Keeps Misleading Public On Oil, Gas Leasing. Here Are The Facts)

    However, the U.S. oil benchmark declined to $105.89 per barrel on Thursday. Still, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has caused uncertainty in global energy markets, leading to higher oil and gasoline prices.

    On Monday, the average cost of gasoline nationwide surpassed $4.104 per gallon, breaking the all-time record. Gas prices have continued to surge, hitting $4.32 per gallon on Thursday, up nearly 54% year-over-year.

    “As Russia’s invasion of Ukraine sends gas prices soaring, fossil fuel companies are raking in record profits,” Khanna said in a statement. “These companies have made billions and used the profits to enrich their own shareholders while average Americans are hurting at the pump.”

    “I’m glad to introduce this legislation with Senator Whitehouse that will provide an incentive to cap gas prices and put money back in the pockets of consumers,” he added.

    Whitehouse, Khanna and the White House didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

    US, Allies Announce Push to Strip Russia Of ‘Most Favored Nation’ Status


    Reported by SHELBY TALCOTT, SENIOR WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT | March 11, 2022

    Read more at https://dailycaller.com/2022/03/11/joe-biden-allies-push-strip-russia-most-favored-nation-status/

    Pres. Biden is moving to strip Russia of its "most favored nation" status. (Screenshot CNN, CNN Newsroom With Poppy Harlow and Jim Sciutto)
    Screenshot CNN, CNN Newsroom With Poppy Harlow and Jim Sciutto

    President Joe Biden announced Friday that the U.S., alongside the G7 and European Union, are moving to revoke Russia’s “most favored nation” status. The status is referred to as “permanent normal trade relations (PNTR)” in the U.S., and Biden said revoking it will “make it harder for Russia to do business with the United States.” By doing it alongside key allies, Biden said the move “will be another crushing blow to the Russian economy” amid its invasion of Ukraine.

    “Each of our nations are going to take steps to deny ‘most favored nation’ status to Russia,” the president said Friday morning at the White House. “A most favored nation status designation means two countries have agreed to trade with each other under the best possible terms – low tariffs, few barriers to trade and the highest possible imports allowed.”

    Lifting a nation’s “most favored” status requires Congress to pass legislation. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has already said she supports the move, and Biden thanked her for holding off on revoking PNTR in the House until he was able to “line up key allies to keep us in complete unison.”

    “Unity among allies is critically important, as you all know – from my perspective, at least,” Biden said. (RELATED: ‘Putin Chose This War’: Biden Lays Out New Sanctions Against Russia After Full-Scale Invasion)

    WATCH:

    The president also touted lawmakers’ bipartisanship during his remarks. He noted that while “many issues divide us in Washington … standing for democracy in Ukraine … should not be one of those issues.”

    “The free world is coming together to confront Putin,” Biden said. “Our two parties here at home are leading the way. With that bipartisan cooperation, I’m looking forward to signing into law the bill revoking PNTR, which is, again, most people think it’s ‘most favored nation status.’”

    Biden announced other efforts aimed at continuing to cripple the Russian economy Friday. He said the administration plans to act further to ban “signature sectors” of the country’s economy, naming the seafood, vodka and diamond sectors as examples. The administration is also adding new names to the list of oligarchs and family members previously targeted by sanctions, declaring that “they support [Russian President Vladimir] Putin” and “steal from the Russian people.”

    “Putin is an aggressor,” Biden said. “He is the aggressor, and Putin must pay the price. He cannot pursue a war that threatens the very foundations … of international peace and stability, and then ask for financial help from the international community.”

    Friday’s announcement comes on the heels of the administration’s decision to ban U.S. imports of Russian oil. The president made that announcement Tuesday, calling it “another powerful blow to Putin’s war machine.” European allies did not announce any such decision in coordination with the U.S., but the countries were consulted as Biden weighed making the move.

    To Punish Putin, U.S. Firms Develop Social Credit System That Would Make Him Proud


    REPORTED BY: ELLE REYNOLDS | MARCH 08, 2022

    Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/03/08/to-punish-putin-u-s-firms-develop-social-credit-system-that-would-make-him-proud/

    credit card

    American institutions are taking anti-Russian sanctions into their own hands, further normalizing a financial social credit system that can ostracize users for holding unacceptable beliefs — a move purported to punish Russia but that actually evokes the authoritarian country’s own system of tracking its citizens’ political views.

    Visa and Mastercard have suspended operations in Russia over the country’s invasion of Ukraine, blocking “cards issued by Russian banks from working in other countries and block[ing] people with cards issued elsewhere from purchasing goods and services from companies in Russia.” American Express has also dropped its Russian operations. Meanwhile, tech companies like Apple and Microsoft have ceased sales of their products in the country.

    It could be tempting to cheer the move for targeting Russia’s authoritarian regime and condemning Russian President Vladimir Putin’s unprovoked attacks on the people of Ukraine. But the actions by private companies against Russians are part of a larger swing by U.S. corporations to deny services to those whose opinions they deem unacceptable — and that’s exactly the kind of social credit system Russia is building to impose on its own people.

    Moscow will use “digital profiles” to track citizens’ “loyalty,” according to a Moscow Times 2020 report. “Moscow City Hall has since 2017 been collecting the gender, age, income level and relationship to other people signed up to its mos.ru website as part of the internet activity monitoring system,” the report notes. “The digital profiles will now include information about Muscovites’ violations, fines, debts and participation in various events, according to the cited documentation.”

    Lest you think the system is limited to the capital city, Russian officials have said that 80 percent of Russians will have such a digital profile by 2025 through the government’s $53 billion Digital Economy Program.

    And now, with Visa and Mastercard cutting ties, Russian banks are turning to China — a country with an even more invasive social credit system. The Chinese Communist Party tracks its people’s economic decisions and even things like being a good or bad driver to reward or punish behavior. Punishment might include anything from slower internet speeds to being barred from flying or staying in certain hotels. There have also been reports of people being denied higher education and having their pets confiscated.

    If you think comparisons between Russia and China’s authoritarian credit systems and the increasing dragnet in the United States are outlandish, just think about how Mastercard and American Express blocked donations to Americans whose beliefs about the 2020 election were found unacceptable, while Visa’s political action committee used the Capitol riot on Jan. 6, 2021 to “temporarily suspend[] all political donations.” Paypal, Venmo, and Shopify all went after people who were supposedly involved in the riot.

    Just last month, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau cracked down on truckers who were protesting Covid mandates, freezing hundreds of bank accounts purported to be associated with the peaceful protest. Crowdsourcing fundraising platform GoFundMe confiscated millions of dollars from protest organizers.

    Previously, GoFundMe suspended a fundraising campaign for Kyle Rittenhouse, who was acquitted of all charges after he shot three men in self-defense. The platform also used the Jan. 6 riot to nix fundraisers for “travel to a political event where there’s risk of violence by the attendees,” and those that “spread misinformation about the election, promote conspiracy theories and contribute to or participate in attacks on U.S. democracy.”

    Meanwhile, Big Tech companies use their powers of censorship to shut down users whose speech is deemed unacceptable, and to nuke alternative platforms from app stores. We shouldn’t cheer U.S. firms for appointing themselves the arbiters of who deserves to participate in our economy (and by extension, our society). If they can do it to Russia, they can do it to you.

    But we also shouldn’t cheer such actions because they move us one step closer to blurring the line between ourselves and the authoritarian tyrants we purport to denounce. If we defeat Russia or China by making our differences unrecognizable, we’ve already lost.


    Elle Reynolds is an assistant editor at The Federalist, and received her B.A. in government from Patrick Henry College with a minor in journalism. You can follow her work on Twitter at @_etreynolds.

    Jen Psaki Is a Lying Liar Who Lies: Insane Gas Prices Edition


    REPORTED BY: TRISTAN JUSTICE | MARCH 07, 2022

    Read more at https://www.conservativereview.com/jen-psaki-is-a-lying-liar-who-lies-insane-gas-prices-edition-2656864250.html/

    Jen Psaki

    President Joe Biden’s Press Secretary Jen Psaki tried to evade White House responsibility for soaring gas prices Monday, casting blame solely on overseas turmoil in Ukraine. Gas prices hit a national average of $4.06 a gallon, according to AAA, this week reaching a new high not seen since 2008 when prices reached their all-time peak at $4.11.

    “The increase,” Psaki said, “is a direct result of the invasion of Ukraine,” adding “there was an anticipation” of rising prices.

    In anticipation, however, the White House has only exacerbated a self-inflicted crisis by doubling down on the administration’s war on domestic energy production in the name of climate change and environmental justice. As the impending invasion of Ukraine foreshadowed turbulence in global energy markets, President Biden’s Department of Justice reinstated the administration’s suspension of new oil and gas leases on federal lands through a legal filing in Louisiana.

    Despite Psaki’s blame on Russian aggression for the spike in energy costs, gas prices began to soar upon Biden’s first days in office after the president’s inaugural orders shut down the Keystone XL pipeline and unilaterally suspended new oil and gas leases on public land.

    According to the Energy Information Administration (EIA), American gas prices eclipsed an average of $3 per gallon by May as President Biden unleashed a cascade of taxes and regulation on the industry while moving to lock down lucrative reserves. In other words, gas prices have been rising since Biden took office, not since Russia launched its invasion of neighboring Ukraine.

    Biden’s suspension of new drilling on federal lands, while temporarily overturned by a federal judge in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana mid-summer, killed incentives in the capital- and labor-intensive industry for operations to keep up with demand, suppressing production. Producers require long-term planning and assurance their operations will remain in place before they pledge billions in new capital to drill in a particular area. That means new leases must always be on the horizon.

    Cancellation of the Keystone XL pipeline alone axed some 830,000 barrels of Canadian crude flowing to Gulf refineries while the U.S. simultaneously doubled imports of Russian oil. Last year, the U.S. welcomed an average of more than 600,000 barrels of Russian crude and related petroleum products daily, financing the Kremlin war machine. As the world’s third-largest oil producer providing more than 10 percent of global supply, Russia raked in $119 billion in resource revenues.

    Biden is reluctant to sanction President Vladimir Putin’s energy sector, with the White House claiming the solution to rising prices is to pivot in favor of cleaner energy sources that are often unreliable and more expensive. Russian gas operations, meanwhile, produce 30 percent more methane than American operators. Iran, where the administration is hoping to lift sanctions and welcome its oil, hosts operations with 85 percent more intense methane emissions than their U.S. counterparts.

    Biden could have brought down energy prices at any point in his presidency but instead has continued to escalate the administration’s animosity towards domestic production and the American worker. An enhanced regulatory regime combined with Wall Street pressure to restrict investment in the capital-intense industry has limited diplomatic options to counter Russian aggression by limiting domestic capacity to supplement supply shocks.

    In Alaska for example, Democrats have sought to lock down decades worth of oil and gas reserves stored under a fraction of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) with reinstated environmental protections poised to become permanent.

    Instead of unleashing American energy potential to reclaim the independence once briefly achieved under the Trump administration, Biden officials are now pleading with authoritarian adversaries in Venezuela and Saudi Arabia to ramp up production abroad.


    Tristan Justice is the western correspondent for The Federalist. He has also written for The Washington Examiner and The Daily Signal. His work has also been featured in Real Clear Politics and Fox News. Tristan graduated from George Washington University where he majored in political science and minored in journalism. Follow him on Twitter at @JusticeTristan or contact him at Tristan@thefederalist.com.

    FLASHBACK: Trump Warned UN About Relying on Russian Oil, Was Laughed At By German Delegation


    Reported by BRIANNA LYMAN | REPORTER | March 07, 2022

    Read more at https://dailycaller.com/2022/03/07/donald-trump-warned-united-nation-relying-russian-oil-german-delegation-laughed/

    Former President Donald Trump speaks at the 2018 UN General Assembly [PBS News Hour screenshot]
    [PBS News Hour screenshot]

    The German delegation appeared to laugh at former President Donald Trump during a 2018 United Nations (U.N.) speech in which the president warned about relying on Russian oil. While speaking at the 73rd U.N. General Assembly, Trump criticized Germany for relying on Russian oil exports.

    “Reliance on a single foreign supplier can leave a nation vulnerable to extortion and intimidation. That is why we congratulate European states, such as Poland, for leading the construction of a Baltic pipeline so that nations are not dependent on Russia to meet their energy needs,” Trump said. “Germany will become totally dependent on Russian energy if it does not immediately change course.”

    “Here in the Western Hemisphere, we are committed to maintaining our independence from the encroachment of expansionist foreign powers,” Trump continued as the camera then panned to the German delegation, who appeared to be laughing. (RELATED: Former Top Trump Official Argues Biden’s Russia Sanctions Are ‘Half Measures,’ Contain Loopholes)

    Trump made similar comments warning about Germany’s energy dependence during a 2018 meeting with German and NATO leaders.

    “It’s very sad when Germany makes a massive oil and gas deal with Russia,” Trump said. “Where, you’re supposed to be guarding against Russia and Germany goes out and pays billions and billions of dollars a year to Russia. So, we’re supposed to protect you against Russia, but they’re paying billions of dollars to Russia, and I think that’s very inappropriate.”

    “Germany is totally controlled by Russia because they will be getting 60-70% of their energy from Russia and a new pipeline, and you tell me if that’s appropriate, and I think it’s not,” he said while addressing NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg.

    Trump approved sanctions to deter the completion of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, which would allow Russia to bypass Ukraine to get gas to Europe and served as a major geopolitical win for Russian President Vladimir Putin.

    Upon taking office, President Joe Biden revoked the sanctions, only recently putting them back in place following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

    Russia Offers Ukraine List of Demands, Says It Will Stop Military Operations ‘in a Moment’ if Met


    Reported By Richard Moorhead | March 7, 2022

    Read more at https://www.westernjournal.com/russia-offers-ukraine-list-demands-says-will-stop-military-operations-moment-met/

    Russia has released a list of four demands it’s calling preconditions for ending its invasion of Ukraine. A Kremlin spokesman identified the terms on Monday, according to Reuters.

    First, Dmitry Peskov said, Ukraine must halt all military action.

    Russian propaganda has consistently invoked the “demilitarization” of Ukraine as an objective of the invasion, demanding that one of the largest countries in Europe remain defenseless.

    Second, Russia wants Ukraine to recognize Crimea as Russian territory.

    Trending: Rep Waltz: Ukrainians Have Been Begging for US Stinger Missiles Since December, But Biden Held Off Until It Was Too Late

    Russia forcibly annexed Crimea in 2014, seizing the region of southern Ukraine in response to growing pro-NATO and European Union sentiment in the former Soviet republic.

    Third, Ukraine must recognize two regions of its territory as independent countries, following Russia’s recognition of the Donetsk People’s Republic and the Luhansk People’s Republic last month.

    Pro-Russian secessionist groups control population centers within the two regions of Eastern Ukraine, where conflict has occurred since 2014. Such a move could lead to Russian annexation of Donetsk and Luhansk.

    After Russian troops poured into Crimea in 2014, the region was briefly declared an “independent country” before its inhabitants supposedly voted to join Russia while facing the gun barrel of a Russian military occupation.

    “We have also spoken about how they should recognize that Crimea is Russian territory and that they need to recognize that Donetsk and Lugansk are independent states,” Peskov told Reuters in a telephone interview.

    Finally, Russia wants Ukraine to amend its constitution to bar the country from pursuing NATO membership.

    “They should make amendments to the constitution according to which Ukraine would reject any aims to enter any bloc,” Peskov said, according to Reuters.

    “And that’s it. It will stop in a moment,” he said.

    Related: Japan Moving to Rebuild Its Military in ‘Big Awakening’

    Peskov said Ukraine was aware of the conditions. The list of demands was outlined as Russian and Ukrainian diplomats begin a new round of talks at the border of Belarus and Poland. Some Ukrainian leaders, such as former President Petro Poroshenko, have expressed doubt that negotiations will lead anywhere.

    The terms, which undermine the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine, are extremely unlikely to lead to a diplomatic agreement to end the conflict.

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

    Richard Moorhead

    Richard Moorhead is a conservative journalist, a graduate of Arizona State University, service member, and guitar player.

    Tim Allen Releases Brutal Statement on Ukraine Invasion: ‘Full of Anger and Disgust’


    Reported By Amanda Thomason | March 4, 2022

    Read more at https://www.westernjournal.com/tim-allen-releases-brutal-statement-ukraine-invasion-full-anger-disgust/

    Many people, organizations and countries have made their disapproval of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine very clear since it began last week.

    Companies have stopped working with Russia. The royal family, generally quiet on political matters, has publicly condemned the invasion. Even Switzerland has moved to sanction Russia.

    Plenty of celebrities have used their social media platforms to decry Russia’s actions. Tim Allen has joined their ranks, stating in no uncertain terms how he feels about the situation.

    Advertisement – story continues below

    “My mind and body are full of anger and disgust at the coward putin ghouls that have attacked a sovereign country,” he tweeted on Thursday.

    “This is the definition of wrong. My head, heart and soul pray for the people of Ukraine.

    Trending:

    Ukraine Negotiations Rocked: Security Service Kills Member of Delegation Suspected of High Treason – Reports

    “F-putin.”

    Allen also shared his sentiments last week as news of war began circulating, asking for prayer for the Ukrainians under attack.

    “‘Appeasement’ is the policy of feeding your friends to a crocodile, one at a time, in hopes that the crocodile will eat you last. – Franklin D. Roosevelt,” he tweeted on Feb. 24.

    “Pray if you will for all those attacked today by the Russians.”

    While many in the replies pointed out that the quote was misattributed to FDR and actually comes from Winston Churchill, Allen’s point remains.

    Other celebrities have posted in solidarity with Ukraine and pointed followers to charities that will help where the need is greatest.

    Actress Mila Kunis, who is Ukrainian, and her husband Ashton Kutcher have started a GoFundMe for Ukrainian refugees, pledging to personally match up to $3 million.

    The celebrity couple hopes to raise $30 million to help those fleeing the country through Airbnb, which is offering free temporary housing to refugees, and Flexport, which is “organizing shipments of relief supplies to refugee sites in Poland, Romania, Hungary, Slovakia and Moldova,” according to the GoFundMe page.

    “While we are witnessing the bravery of Ukrainians, we are also bearing witness to the unimaginable burden of those who have chosen safety,” the page reads.

    “Countless amounts of people have left everything they know and love behind to seek refuge. With nothing but what they could carry, these Ukrainian refugees are in need of housing and supplies right away.”

    Amanda Thomason, Contributor

    Amanda holds an MA in Rhetoric and TESOL from Cal Poly Pomona. After teaching composition and logic for several years, she’s strayed into writing full-time and especially enjoys animal-related topics.

    Russian state-owned media lays off most employees and shuts down operations in the US


    Reported by CARLOS GARCIA | March 03, 2022

    Read more at https://www.conservativereview.com/russian-state-owned-media-lays-off-most-employees-and-shuts-down-operations-in-the-us-2656837889.html/

    The U.S. arm of a Russian state-owned media outlet shut down on Thursday after being expelled from several platforms over the Russian invasion into Ukraine. CNN first reported that Russia Today was ceasing operations and firing most of its staff in the United States. The memo obtained by CNN from the general manager of T&R Productions blamed the shutdown on “unforeseen business interruption events.”

    “Unfortunately, we anticipate this layoff will be permanent, meaning that this will result in the permanent separation from employment of most T&R employees at all locations,” wrote Misha Solodovnikov.

    The media network had been an outlet for pro-Russian propaganda but was removed from DirecTV this week and then later from Roku streaming services. On Tuesday, Google said that they had blocked mobile apps connected to Sputnik and RT from their app store and from their search tool. Apple made similar moves on its app store.

    RT Deputy Editor-in-Chief Anna Belkina issued a statement angrily decrying the bans.

    “This collective ‘establishment’ seems to be terrified of a mere presence of any outside voice for the fear of losing their historically captive audience, if that audience encounters a different perspective,” she said.

    CNN also detailed a personal meeting between Solodovnikov and the hosts, correspondents, and producers of RT American in the Washington, D.C., bureau on Thursday based on a source who attended it. Solodovnikov told the employees that their jobs were being terminated with two months severance pay. One RT host spoke to CNN under the condition of anonymity about the somber meeting.

    “I have never felt more heartbroken as they have nothing to do with this conflict and seriously were just trying to make a decent living to provide for their families,” the host said.

    Another source told CNN that people were shocked, and many cried after the announcement.

    Here’s more about the effort against Russia Today:

    Google blocks RT, Sputnik from Play app store www.youtube.com

    Today’s Politically INCORRECT Cartoon by A.F. Branco


    A.F. Branco Cartoon – Glory to The Heroes

    A.F. BRANCO | on March 4, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-glory-to-the-heroes/

    The Goliath (Russia) may win against Ukraine (David) in the end but not without a fight and not nearly as soon as they hoped.

    Ukrainian Tough
    Political cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2022.

    Donations/Tips accepted and appreciated – $1.00 – $5.00 – $25.00 – $50.00 – $100 – it all helps to fund this website and keep the cartoons coming. Also Venmo @AFBranco – THANK YOU!

    A.F. Branco has taken his two greatest passions, (art and politics) and translated them into the cartoons that have been popular all over the country, in various news outlets including “Fox News”, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, and “The Washington Post.” He has been recognized by such personalities as Dinesh D’Souza, James Woods, Sarah Palin, Larry Elder, Lars Larson, Rush Limbaugh, and shared by President Donald Trump.

    Million-Dollar Bounty Placed on Vladimir Putin


    Reported By Abby Liebing | March 3, 2022

    Read more at https://www.westernjournal.com/million-dollar-bounty-placed-vladimir-putin/

    A bounty has been put out for Russian President Vladimir Putin. Alex Konanykhin, a Russian businessman, has offered a $1 million bounty to Russian officers to arrest Putin as a war criminal, Business Insider reported.

    “I promise to pay $1,000,000 to the officer(s) who, complying with their constitutional duty, arrest(s) Putin as a war criminal under Russian and international laws. Putin is not the Russian president as he came to power as the result of a special operation of blowing up apartment buildings in Russia, then violated the Constitution by eliminating free elections and murdering his opponents,” Konanykhin wrote in a Facebook post.

    The explosion to which Konanykhin referred is part of a theory that the Russian Federal Security Service, of which Putin was head from 1998 to 1999, blew up apartments in 1999, then blamed it on Chechens. That explosion, was part of what sparked the Second Chechen War, an effort that made Putin very popular in Russia. In 1999, Putin became the Russian prime minister, before being named acting president on Dec. 31 of that year. He was elected to the presidency in March 2000, the Independent reported. With obvious animosity, Konanykhin also noted that he felt it was his duty to oppose Putin’s war and keep assisting Ukraine against the Russian president.

    “As an ethnic Russian and a Russia citizen, I see it as my moral duty to facilitate the denazification of Russia. I will continue my assistance to Ukraine in its heroic efforts to withstand the onslaught of Putin’s Orda,” he added in his post.

    Konanykhin’s original Facebook post included a photo of Putin, with the caption, “Wanted: Dead or alive. Vladimir Putin for mass murder,” the Independent reported.

    Facebook then banned his post.

    But Konanykhin then re-posted with just the text informing about his bounty offer.

    “Facebook banned my post; do you think it was a correct decision? I omit the picture as it was a ‘dead or alive’ poster, but this is the text,” he wrote.

    Konanykhin is one of the many Russian businessmen who rose to wealth and prominence after the collapse of the Soviet Union, according to Newsweek. Konanykhin said he has not visited Russia since 1992, Business Insider reported.

    The Russian businessman has a complicated history with the Russian government. In 1996 he was in the U.S. but was arrested after Russian authorities claimed he has embezzled $8 million from the Russian Exchange Bank, the Independent reported. However, the U.S. gave him political asylum after several FBI agents testified that the Russian mafia had put a contract on Konanykhin. Several years later, his asylum was revoked, but he was not deported. A U.S. district judge cancelled his deportation, saying that returning Konanykhin to Moscow “stinks.”

    After placing a bounty on Putin, Konanykhin was asked if he feared that Putin would come after him for putting a bounty on his head.

    “Putin is known to murder his opponents,” he said, Business Insider reported. “He has millions of them now.”

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Abby Liebing, Associate

    Abby Liebing is a Hillsdale College graduate with a degree in history. She has written for various outlets and enjoys covering foreign policy issues and culture.

    Gutfeld says US Government Is ‘Acting Like White Knights’ as They Purchase Russian Oil


    Reported by NICOLE SILVERIO, CONTRIBUTOR | March 02, 2022

    Read more at https://dailycaller.com/2022/03/02/hands-clean-greg-gutfeld-white-knights-russian-oil/

    Greg Gutfeld on "The Five"
    [Screenshot/The Five/Fox News]

    Fox News host Greg Gutfeld said the U.S. government is “playing both sides” as they purchase Russian oil during a Wednesday appearance on “The Five.”

    “Who is buying Russian oil right now?” Gutfeld began. “And how much is Russian oil? Is the price bottoming out, who’s keeping them afloat? If it’s us, if it’s our government, that sucks. Because we’re sitting here acting like we’re the white knights and what are we doing? We’re playing both sides.”

    “We were there in Ukraine, too, so let’s not pretend like our hands are clean on this,” he continued.

    Gufeld said it is similar to the U.S. government’s knowledge of gain-of-function research at the Wuhan Institute of Technology. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) admitted to funding the procedure in October, despite repeated denial from White House senior medical advisor Anthony Fauci.

    President Joe Biden’s administration implemented their first round of sanctions on a small portion of the Russian oil and gas sector Wednesday to restrict U.S. oil refining technology exports to Russia. The White House confirmed the restrictions will not immediately have an impact on Russian energy but will “overtime.”

    The country’s energy industry makes up about 40% of Russia’s economy. The U.S. imported more than 670,000 barrels of oil daily from Russia in 2021, according to U.S. Energy Information Administration full-year data. (RELATED: Rep. Jim Jordan Says Biden Might Want To Change His Policies, But The ‘Radical Left’ In His Party Will Never Let Him)

    Sanctioning Russian energy has gained bipartisan support from lawmakers, political commentators and elites. Democratic West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin criticized the U.S. for continuing to allow imports of crude oil and petroleum from Russia, while Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis called for Biden and European allies to “hit” Russian President Vladimir Putin “where it counts” by harming Russia’s energy sector.

    The administration invoked the Keystone XL Pipeline, which intended to carry 8,000 barrels of oil from Canada to Texas, then paused oil and gas companies from drilling on federal lands and receiving federal leases.

    Nancy Pelosi Echoes Republicans’ Calls For Russian Oil Import Ban


    Reported by THOMAS CATENACCI, ENERGY & ENVIRONMENT REPORTER | March 03, 2022

    Read more at https://dailycaller.com/2022/03/03/nancy-pelosi-russian-oil-import-ban/

    US-POLITICS-PELOSI-BRIEFING
    Pedro Ugarte/AFP via Getty Images

    House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she would support a ban on Russian oil imports, aligning herself with bipartisan lawmakers pushing for energy independence.

    “I’m all for that,” Pelosi told reporters during a briefing Thursday. “Ban it.”

    Several bicameral Republicans and centrist Democrats have advocated for the Biden administration to impose a sweeping ban on Russian oil and petroleum imports in the wake of the Ukraine crisis. Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered troops to invade Ukraine on Feb. 21, leading to widespread condemnation from global leaders. Lawmakers have argued that U.S. dependence on Russian oil and petroleum products places the country at a strategic disadvantage. The U.S. imported more than 670,000 barrels of oil per day from Russia in 2021, U.S. Energy Information Administration data showed(RELATED: Oil Hits 11-Year High As Big Oil Dumps Russia, White House Mulls Energy Sanctions)

    “I am calling on the Administration and industry partners to take action immediately, up to and including banning crude oil imports from Russia,” Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin, the chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, said in a statement on Monday.

    WATCH:

    Republican Rep. Tom Cole and Republican Sens. Jerry Moran and Roger Marshall asked President Joe Biden to halt Russian oil imports in a letter on Tuesday. Republican Arkansas Sen. Tom Cotton has also joined in on calls for a ban.

    While, the White House has announced a series of economic sanctions on Russia’s economy and its powerful oligarchs close to Putin, it has stopped short of imposing restrictions on its fossil fuel industry. The administration has argued that such sanctions would harm American and European consumers more than the Russian economy.

    “The United States and our Allies and partners do not have a strategic interest in reducing the global supply of energy – which is why we have carved out energy payments from our financial sanctions,” a White House fact sheet published Wednesday stated.

    Russia’s federal government relies upon its oil and gas industry to fund a whopping 40% of its annual budget.

    Oil prices have skyrocketed to their highest level in a decade in the aftermath of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine as the threat of indirect impacts of sanctions have roiled markets. Big Oil corporations have also pulled out of lucrative drilling and exploration ventures throughout Russia.

    Today’s Politically INCORRECT Cartoon by A.F. Branco


    A.F. Branco Cartoon – One Big-Gas Mistake

    A.F. BRANCO | on March 3, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-one-big-gas-mistake/

    Biden says he stands with Ukraine while paying Russia money for oil that funds the war against them.

    Biden, One Big-Gas Mistake
    Political cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2022

    Donations/Tips accepted and appreciated – $1.00 – $5.00 – $25.00 – $50.00 – $100 – it all helps to fund this website and keep the cartoons coming. Also Venmo @AFBranco – THANK YOU!

    A.F. Branco has taken his two greatest passions, (art and politics) and translated them into the cartoons that have been popular all over the country, in various news outlets including “Fox News”, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, and “The Washington Post.” He has been recognized by such personalities as Dinesh D’Souza, James Woods, Sarah Palin, Larry Elder, Lars Larson, Rush Limbaugh, and shared by President Donald Trump.

    Jerry Broussard Op-ed


    Wednesday, March 2, 2022

    I was watching the news this morning. FOX was reviewing last nights propaganda speech. The subject of the oil situation came up, especially about the so-called “oil reserve” Biden was releasing. It amounts to a three-day supply of oil in America.

    Several thoughts came up regarding the situation between Putin and Biden. With all that the socialist put Trump through, (“Russia, Russia, Russia”) this geriatric dementia 80 something, is more in the pocket of Putin than the socialist accused Trump of being.

    There is a meme going around of someone saying, “Instead of this Build Back Better businesses, how about just putting it all back the way you found it.” Indeed. We were oil independent, selling to other nations, and Putin was sitting on drilled oil. Our economy was robust, and we all could afford to drive our cars (there is a gas station a half block from us with prices of almost $6 a gallon). Do they really think we’re that stupid?

    Everything these socialist’ have done is all designed around “control, control, control”. We all know now that this pandemic was more fear mongering than actual danger. Numbers inflated, bad advice, everything about it manipulated to grow fear in order for them to control almost every aspect of our lives.

    After shutting down the Keystone Pipeline, and making us dependent on Russia for our oil (“Russia, Russia, Russia”), they shut down a robust economy buy shutting us up in our homes. Might as well have been house arrest. Supply lines cut off, making everything more expensive, and growing the fear that we might never have enough toilet paper.

    Lie, after lie, after lie about face masks, numbers of deaths, and feeding more fear. Instead of a few weeks, or months, these manipulated lies have last two years. And miraculously, the China virus stopped it’s attack on the day of Biden State of the Union AS WE WANT YOU TO BELIEVE IT IS, BUT IN REALITY, WE HAVE DESTROYED IT FOR PUTIN AND XI.

    Last night Biden threw up a speech someone else wrote, saying all the things he was expected to say, and meaning none of it, while stretching his dominion further. His greatest lies were those about Russia and Ukraine. We already have evidence of his manipulation of Ukraine leadership with his boast. Summed up, more Russian control of our economy by our dependence on Putin’s oil.

    Now gasoline is over $5 a gallon, and climbing. Supply chains are growing, restaurants are so expensive, it’s prohibitive to eat out anymore. $9 for a Big Mac meal????? Heating our homes are down to multiple blankets, and electrical cost are criminal. And I think I have the reason all this has been engineered.

    They locked us down to see if they could pull it off. Success. Once you give Socialist/Leftist power, THEY WILL NEVER GIVE IT BACK. So, make everything so expensive that Americans cannot afford to go out. Make gasoline so expensive that AMERICANS HAVE TO STAY HOME (LOCKDOWN). Add to that the Socialist/Leftist puts forth this geriatric dementia 80 something as a mock President, and you have a tyrannical government that is only interested in filling their own pockets, and those of the oligarchs that control them.

    Angry enough America? Violence is not the answer, because that’s what they expect. Prayer? YES! Speak up, YES! Call them on their lies and manipulation? YES! Get out the vote and hold them accountable for their cheating? YES! Let’s start where we live and spread out nationally. I refuse to be controlled one more second. How about you?

    Russian ruble craters to less than 1 US cent, stock market freezes after Russia’s removal from global banking system


    Reported by PHIL SHIVER | February 28, 2022

    Read more at https://www.theblaze.com/news/russian-ruble-plunges-stock-market-closes\

    New financial penalties levied on Russia for its continued aggression in Ukraine appeared to hit the country’s economy hard on Monday as Russia’s currency cratered to a record low value and its stock market froze. The Russian ruble’s value plummeted to less than one U.S. cent on Monday, Time reported, dropping more than 25% to 105.27 per U.S. dollar, down from approximately 84 per dollar late Friday.

    After initially declining to do so, the U.S., Japan, and several European nations on Saturday agreed to enact more severe sanctions on Russia as its forces continued an assault on Ukraine’s capital, Kyiv, in an attempt to overthrow the government. The group of nations went after central bank reserves that underpin Russia’s economy and removed several key Russian banks from SWIFT, the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication, a vital international banking system.

    Time noted the ruble’s calamitous decline would likely send inflation soaring, a development that would hurt all Russians and not just the elites who were targeted in earlier sanctions.

    Critics had called for the forceful move to be enacted immediately upon Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, but Western leaders initially balked. Even now, Time noted that the disconnection from SWIFT is “partial,” leaving room for the U.S. and Europe to escalate penalties.”

    Yet the effects are reportedly being felt already, as Russian residents rushed to ATMs to withdraw cash amid the ruble’s free fall. In addition to the currency plunge, the Russian stock market also took a major hit on Monday. According to the New York Times, officials closed the Moscow stock exchange for the day, citing the “developing situation.”

    “The economic reality has, of course, changed,” the Kremlin’s spokesman, Dmitri S. Peskov, reportedly told members of the press while announcing that Russian President Vladimir Putin had ordered an emergency meeting with top finance officials.

    Western restrictions effectively have placed a chokehold on the Kremlin’s ability to access its war chest of financial reserves and sent to the country careening towards an economic crisis. At the very least, the world intends to financially isolate Russia in a way not experienced since the Cold War.

    “Putin embarked on a path aiming to destroy Ukraine, but what he is also doing, in fact, is destroying the future of his own country,” European Union Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said Saturday.

    Yet even as Russia’s economy faced significant distress and delegations from Russia and Ukraine met in Belarus for peace talks, the Russian offensive showed no signs of letting up. Ukrainian officials claimed Monday that an air raid on residential areas in Kharkiv, Ukraine’s second-largest city, left dozens of people dead, including several civilians.

    “Kharkiv has just been massively fired upon by grads [rockets]. Dozens of dead and hundreds of wounded,” the interior ministry said on Facebook, according to BBC News.

    Today’s Politically INCORRECT Cartoon by A.F. Branco


    A.F. Branco Cartoon – An Inconvenient War

    A.F. BRANCO | on March 1, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-an-inconvenient-war/

    John Kerry is in hot water for referring to the Russian attack on Ukraine as merely a Putin distraction from focusing on Climate Change.

    John Kerry on Ukraine
    Political cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2022.

    Donations/Tips accepted and appreciated – $1.00 – $5.00 – $25.00 – $50.00 – $100 – it all helps to fund this website and keep the cartoons coming. Also Venmo @AFBranco – THANK YOU!

    A.F. Branco has taken his two greatest passions, (art and politics) and translated them into the cartoons that have been popular all over the country, in various news outlets including “Fox News”, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, and “The Washington Post.” He has been recognized by such personalities as Dinesh D’Souza, James Woods, Sarah Palin, Larry Elder, Lars Larson, Rush Limbaugh, and shared by President Donald Trump.

    Belarus is preparing to invade Ukraine and provide support to its Russian allies


    Reported by SAMUEL MANGOLD-LENETT | February 28, 2022

    Read more at https://www.theblaze.com/news/belarus-is-preparing-to-invade-ukraine-and-provide-support-to-its-russian-allies/

    Belarus is preparing to deploy troops into Ukraine in support of the country’s Russian allies. A Biden administration official said that Belarusian leadership could order the deployment of forces into Ukraine as early as Monday, the Washington Post reported. The official said, “It’s very clear Minsk is now an extension of the Kremlin.”

    The Belarusian president, Alexander Lukashenko, is a close ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin and has allowed Russian troops to conduct military drills and store supplies within his country.

    On Saturday, Ukrainian and Russian leadership agreed to hold peace talks along the Ukrainian-Belarusian border. Lukashenko’s planned invasion of Ukraine will, naturally, complicate these planned talks.

    The Belarusian opposition leader, Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, recently called for sanctions against Lukashenko and the Belarusian regime. Newsweek reported that Tsikhanouskaya referred to them as “accomplices of Russia’s brutal assault on Ukraine. A Ukrainian government official told CNN that the Ukrainian government had intelligence indicating that Belarus is ready “to maybe participate directly” in the ongoing invasion of Ukraine.

    The official said that the Belarusian government is allowing Russia to use Belarus to enter Ukraine, “in addition to allowing Russians to use their territory as well as letting them cross the border.” However, as of now, according to a senior U.S. defense official, the American government has not seen Belarusian troops “being readied to move into Ukraine” or “that they are moving or are in Ukraine.”

    Anticipating Belarus’ participation in the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the Biden administration suspended all operations in the American embassy in Belarus. The State Department also encouraged non-emergency employees and family members of American diplomats to vacate the U.S. embassy in Russia.

    U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said, “The U.S. Department of State has suspended operations at our Embassy in Minsk, Belarus and authorized the voluntary departure (‘authorized departure’) of non-emergency employees and family members at our Embassy in Moscow, Russia. We took these steps due to security and safety issues stemming from the unprovoked and unjustified attack by Russian military forces in Ukraine.”

    Over the weekend, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine intensified as Russian officials threatened to drop the International Space Station on the United States and its allies and Putin ordered the Russian military to put its nuclear deterrence forces on high alert.

    Putin blamed rhetoric and posturing from NATO allies and thoroughgoing economic sanctions against Russia for why he put Russia’s nuclear forces on high alert.

    Switzerland Drops Neutrality in Rare Move to Freeze Russian Assets


    Reported by DYLAN HOUSMAN | HEALTHCARE REPORTER | February 28, 2022

    Read more at https://dailycaller.com/2022/02/28/switzerland-ukraine-russia-freeze-assets-putin-lavrov/

    Switzerland Drops Neutrality In Rare Move To Freeze Russian Assets
    (Photo by FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP via Getty Images)

    Switzerland announced Monday it will be freezing Russian assets due to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine, breaking a longstanding tradition of neutrality in foreign conflicts.

    Swiss President Ignazio Cassis said Putin’s assets, along with those of Russia’s prime minister, foreign minister and 367 more individuals sanctioned by the European Union, would be frozen immediately, according to The New York Times. Cassis met with the Swiss Federal Council and determined that action was necessary due to the “unprecedented” aggression displayed by Russia in invading a sovereign European state.

    Switzerland further joined the rest of the E.U. in shutting down its airspace to Russian aircraft, but said it will decide whether to join further European sanctions on a case-by-case basis.

    The flight ban will prevent Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov from making a planned speech Tuesday to the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva. As of 2020, Russian companies and citizens owned more than $11 billion in assets in Swiss banks, according to the NYT. 

    Switzerland has historically maintained a neutral stance in global conflicts, in part due to its role as a global financial hub. Cassis said he was concerned that following along with all European sanctions could threaten the country’s reputation, but that some action was necessary.

    Today’s TWO Politically INCORRECT Cartoons by A.F. Branco


    A.F. Branco Cartoon – Reminiscing

    A.F. BRANCO | on February 26, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-reminiscing/

    Now that Biden has all but destroyed the country it’s nice to look back on better days with Trump as President.

    Trump Gave Us better Days
    Political cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2021.

    A.F. Branco Cartoon – Back to the Future

    A.F. BRANCO | on February 28, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-back-to-the-future/

    Obama ridiculed Romney’s Russia warning in 2012 during their presidential debate, and now?

    Romney 80s Foreign policy
    Political cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2022.

    Donations/Tips accepted and appreciated – $1.00 – $5.00 – $25.00 – $50.00 – $100 – it all helps to fund this website and keep the cartoons coming. Also Venmo @AFBranco – THANK YOU!

    A.F. Branco has taken his two greatest passions, (art and politics) and translated them into the cartoons that have been popular all over the country, in various news outlets including “Fox News”, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, and “The Washington Post.” He has been recognized by such personalities as Dinesh D’Souza, James Woods, Sarah Palin, Larry Elder, Lars Larson, Rush Limbaugh, and shared by President Donald Trump.

    ‘He is risking his life’: Russian tennis star shows what true courage looks like


    Posted by BLAZETV STAFF | February 25, 2022   

    Read more at https://www.theblaze.com/video/this-takes-true-courage-russian-tennis-player-shows-what-true-bravery-looks-like/

    Russian tennis player Andrey Rublev wrote a truly courageous message on a TV camera moments after advancing to the final at the Dubai Championships on Friday. A video of Rublev writing “No War Please” on a TV camera just after beating Poland’s Hubert Hurkacz in their semifinal match has taken Twitter by storm.

    “In these moments you realize that my match is not important. It’s not about my match, how it affects me. What’s happening is much more terrible,” Rublev said on Thursday.

    “You realize how important it is to have peace in the world and to respect each other no matter what, to be united. We should take care of our earth and of each other. This is the most important thing.”

    Outkick’s Clay Travis tweeted, “Given the threats a Russian athlete can face from its government, this is what speaking truth to power actually looks like. And this takes true courage.”

    And the praise just kept coming. Here are a few samples:

    A few folks on Twitter couldn’t help noting the contrast between Rublev’s action and those of a certain American athlete who claims to care about human rights.

    Today’s Politically INCORRECT Cartoon by A.F. Branco


    A.F. Branco Cartoon – Window to the Soul

    A.F. BRANCO | on February 25, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-window-to-the-soul/

    Eyes being the window to the soul reveal Putin as an evil tyrant and Biden as a dithering idiot.

    Putin and Biden Eyes
    Political cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2022

    Donations/Tips accepted and appreciated – $1.00 – $5.00 – $25.00 – $50.00 – $100 – it all helps to fund this website and keep the cartoons coming. Also Venmo @AFBranco – THANK YOU!

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    Op-ed: Flynn Exposes Truth About Putin’s Real Plan – Says It’s Time to Pray


    Commentary By Michael Flynn | February 24, 2022

    Read more at https://www.westernjournal.com/breaking-flynn-exposes-truth-putins-real-plan-says-time-pray/

    With the price of oil pushing above $100 per barrel, the U.S. stock market opening with heavy losses, more global economic challenges looming, the real potential for significant loss of life, and the international community in complete disarray with feeble attempts to condemn what was totally avoidable, we face the onset of another very grave and historic period of tension between competing ideologies and worse, the onset of WWIII.

    This “invasion” was totally avoidable.

    As one friend told me, President Joe Biden and his failed foreign policy team set the table and sent the invitation and Russian President Vladimir Putin came and spoiled the dinner party.

    Clearly, there are fault lines on both sides, but for now, we must pray that those affected, without the ability to decide their fate, are able to survive this extraordinary period of world history unfolding (for many, unraveling) on the world stage. Civilians and military forces will be killed, wounded and displaced; those are the real consequences of war.

    Pray that this conventional war is limited in scope, purpose and intent.

    Yes, there were gross violations of previous agreements due to incompetence, arrogance and ignorance that got us to this point. Beyond this, what happens next is anyone’s guess, but Putin (and Xi — Taiwan?) just laid down a new world order marker.

    That said, it is doubtful that the U.S. administration will change its failed foreign policy, and instead, it will make weak attempts to triple down on leveraging this extremely serious situation in Europe to continue to distract from problems here at home.

    Given the shutting down of the Keystone pipeline and America’s energy independence while also enabling Russia and Germany (read: Europe) to reopen the Nordstream pipeline, one has to wonder about the discussions in the Oval Office that came to these conclusions.

    This is the Biden administration: describing America as a systemically racist nation; appointing Marxists and other radical ideologues to positions of power; allowing millions to surge across our southern border; attempting to federalize our election systems and processes; implementing racist critical race theory in our schools, military and government; and all along, raising the national debt until it is closing in on $30 trillion — spending us toward extinction, all for left-wing causes.

    Let us not forget the Afghanistan disaster, the myriad lies about COVID, a certain Biden-owned laptop, a complete refusal to investigate allegations of election irregularities … all while China gets a pass.

    It is extremely difficult to trust this administration when they lie with a straight face to the American people daily.

    Anyone who questions these rotten foreign and domestic policies is demonized as a racist. We see the unleashing of the federal government on citizens who are simply exercising their constitutional rights and the establishment media covers all this incompetence with a fake smile due to their own deep corruption.

    Our president rarely entertains questions or takes responsibility for his tone deafness and failures. The White House ignored — even laughed at — Putin’s legitimate security concerns and ethnic unrest in the Ukraine.

    We have yet to hear from the president of the United States an explanation of U.S. national security interests in the region.

    Instead, we continue to demonize Russia — reminiscent of the fake Russia-collusion hysteria we now know was perpetrated against the Trump administration by elements of the Clinton campaign  and Obama administration (among others).

    President Putin calculated this strategic, historic and geographic play and made the decision to move.

    And he did.

    All that given, there will never be justification for this invasion or any other form of invasion. However, never forget that war results when diplomacy fails.

    May God watch over and protect those in harm’s way and may God continue to bless and protect the United States of America.

    Michael Flynn

    Retired Army Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn served as national security advisor to President Donald Trump. Headshot photo credit: Jewel Samad / AFP via Getty Images.

    Today’s Politically INCORRECT Cartoon by A.F. Branco


    A.F. Branco Cartoon – Dirty Hairy-Legs

    A.F. BRANCO | on February 24, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-dirty-hairy-legs/

    Putin doesn’t look like he’s quaking in his boots like Biden predicted as Russia invades Ukraine.

    Biden Sanctions for Russia
    Political cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2022

    Donations/Tips accepted and appreciated – $1.00 – $5.00 – $25.00 – $50.00 – $100 – it all helps to fund this website and keep the cartoons coming. Also Venmo @AFBranco – THANK YOU!

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    Today’s Politically INCORRECT Cartoon by A.F. Branco


    A.F. Branco Cartoon – Still Leading from Behind

    A.F. BRANCO | on February 23, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-still-leading-from-behind/

    Biden continues to lead from a position of weakness emboldening our enemies like Russia, China, and Iran.

    Biden Weakness
    Political cartoon by A.F. Branco ©2021.

    Donations/Tips accepted and appreciated – $1.00 – $5.00 – $25.00 – $50.00 – $100 – it all helps to fund this website and keep the cartoons coming. Also Venmo @AFBranco – THANK YOU!

    A.F. Branco has taken his two greatest passions, (art and politics) and translated them into the cartoons that have been popular all over the country, in various news outlets including “Fox News”, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, and “The Washington Post.” He has been recognized by such personalities as Dinesh D’Souza, James Woods, Sarah Palin, Larry Elder, Lars Larson, Rush Limbaugh, and shared by President Donald Trump.

    Brace Yourself: Expert Says Gas Prices Could Reach $7 Per Gallon in Biden’s America


    Commentary By Warner Todd Huston | February 22, 2022

    Read more at https://www.westernjournal.com/brace-expert-says-gas-prices-reach-7-per-gallon-bidens-america/

    The price of gas continues to soar in this era of Bidenflation. It is getting so bad, some experts are warning that we could see prices as outrageously high as $7 per gallon in some parts of the country. The current high prices are not new, either. Gasoline has been on the rise for seven straight weeks, according to GasBuddy data reported by Fox Carolina.

    “Veteran energy strategist Dan Dicker said he can see gas prices going up to $5 a gallon. Dicker said some areas might even get to $6.50 or $7,” Fox Carolina added.

    GasBuddy noted that the national average is almost twenty cents a gallon higher than a month ago and is nearly a dollar higher than one year ago. Worse, per gallon prices have already nearly doubled in just two years. Gas was only $2.17 a gallon average at the end of 2020. And it is no coincidence that 2020 was the last full year we had a president who wanted the U.S. to be energy independent. But already, in deep blue states, gas is getting perilously close to double those prices seen in 2020. In deep blue Illinois, for instance, gas now averages $3.60 a gallon for regular (nearly $4.50 for premium), while the national average is $3.50, according to traveler assistance group AAA.

    It is even worse in California where the average price per gallon for regular is an unheard of $4.75 — more than a dollar higher than the national average!

    Left-wing news sources continue to lay the blame for these skyrocketing prices at the door of Russia’s threatened invasion of Ukraine. Indeed, the Associated Press is only worried over the high costs of gasoline because it will likely have a political impact for Biden and the Democrats in the 2022 elections, ……………………………

    READ THE REST OF THIS COMMENTARY AT https://www.westernjournal.com/brace-expert-says-gas-prices-reach-7-per-gallon-bidens-america/

    Today’s Politically INCORRECT Cartoon by A.F. Branco


    A.F. Branco Cartoon – Border Guard

    A.F. BRANCO | on February 4, 2022 | https://comicallyincorrect.com/a-f-branco-cartoon-border-guard/

    Weak leader Biden is more concerned with the Ukraine border than his own U.S. Border.

    Biden on the Ukraine Border
    Political Cartoon by A.F. Branco ©202.

    Donations/Tips accepted and appreciated – $1.00 – $5.00 – $25.00 – $50.00 – $100 – it all helps to fund this website and keep the cartoons coming. Also Venmo @AFBranco – THANK YOU!

    A.F. Branco has taken his two greatest passions, (art and politics) and translated them into the cartoons that have been popular all over the country, in various news outlets including “Fox News”, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, and “The Washington Post.” He has been recognized by such personalities as Dinesh D’Souza, James Woods, Sarah Palin, Larry Elder, Lars Larson, Rush Limbaugh, and shared by President Donald Trump.

    In Opposing War with Russia, Tucker Carlson Champions the Hard-Won Truths of Putting American Interests First


    REPORTED BY: SUMANTRA MAITRA | JANUARY 31, 2022

    Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/01/31/in-opposing-war-with-russia-tucker-carlson-champions-the-hard-won-truths-of-putting-american-interests-first/

    Tucker Carlson monologue on Russia

    Arecent Tucker Carlson monologue questioned the relentless narrative insisting Americans must compulsively side with Ukraine against Russia in their conflict.

    “We are potentially on the verge of a land war in Europe aimed at extinguishing democracy and sovereignty, and the American right wing is on the side of ethno-nationalist authoritarianism. That’s where we’re at,” tweeted President Obama’s former speechwriter Ben Rhodes, who coined the phrase “DC blob,” in reply to Carlson without a hint of irony.

    Another Democrat operative, who allegedly worked with the Ukrainian embassy to dig up dirt on President Trump, tweeted that Carlson should be prosecuted as a foreign agent. To top it all, President Obama’s former Russia hand quite literally called for war against a nuclear rival to ensure the sovereignty of Ukraine, a proposition unthinkable during Cold War bipartisanship, when the first instinct was to ensure great power equilibrium and avoid mutually assured destruction.

    They are not the only ones. A recent New Yorker profile makes it clearer than any:

    Vladimir Putin presents himself to his citizens and to the world as the standard-bearer of a modern counter-enlightenment. He has declared liberal democracy ‘obsolete,’ a political arrangement that has ‘outlived its purpose. One of his historical role models is said to be Alexander III, a reactionary tsar in the Romanov dynasty who instituted draconian restrictions on the press, sought to ‘Russify’ his multi-ethnic empire, and mobilized against internal and external threats. Four years ago, Putin expressed his deep admiration for the tsar while visiting the Crimean Peninsula, a substantial and distinctly unthreatening parcel of Ukraine that Russia invaded in 2014 and has occupied ever since.

    A Rabid Response to the New Right’s Power

    There is a palpable panic at Carlson arguably driving the GOP towards a more pre-war conservatism. It’s even being hysterically termed Putinism and Russia First” by some commentators. Michael McFaul, Obama’s Russia ambassador, was vocal on Twitter arguing that opposing Russia is a moral duty of anyone who opposes “imperialism,” alongside both prominent liberal theorists and second-tier neoconservative internationalist gadflies.

    There has also been relentless fearmongering about Carlson, authoritarianism, and nationalism. Some have gone so far as to bizarrely tag Carlson a “comrade,” which is absurd because Putin’s Russia is far more Christian and conservative than the increasingly secular West.

    “Why is it disloyal to side with Russia but loyal to side with Ukraine?” Carlson asked, provoking commentary noting Putin murders dissidents. Yet the world is full of rulers who murderously abuse power—for example, by sending drones that kill non-combatants and children.

    It cannot be a matter of American patriotism to send U.S. troops to die for evils in other nations, or United States must attempt to police the entire globe. Experience has shown that is practically impossible and deeply damaging to U.S. national interests.

    Thus in recent years, the ascendant New Right has led a bipartisan push for a more restrained foreign policy, one predicated on cutting down on foreign entanglements (termed as foreign policy realism in academic circles) especially from the Middle East, pushing Europe to spend a lot more for its own defense, and focusing more on domestic issues, as well as the rise of China. Carlson is perhaps the most prominent voice of that school in the right and has consistently opposed needless foreign confrontation, especially over Iran and Russia.

    Matt Walsh and Sohrab Ahmari recently also opposed further confrontation with Russia over ensuring democracy and rights in Ukraine, as this conflict does not directly threaten the American landmass or way of life. Prominent next-gen Republican lawmakers and foreign policy leaders, such as Adam Laxalt, Bernie Moreno, J. D. Vance, Blake Masters, and Peter Meijer also often voice more realist rhetoric.

    Is It America’s Job to Change Other Nations’ Regimes?

    This realignment has also included questioning whether the ascending conservative foreign-policy realism in America, based on a narrow definition of national interest, is compatible with progressivism. Progressivism, as John Mearsheimer noted, is by definition universalist, radical, and revolutionary.

    Mearsheimer wrote, “because liberalism prizes the concept of inalienable or natural rights, committed liberals are deeply concerned about the rights of virtually every individual on the planet. This universalist logic creates a powerful incentive for liberal states to get involved in the affairs of countries that seriously violate their citizens’ rights. To take this a step further, the best way to ensure that the rights of foreigners are not trampled is for them to live in a liberal democracy. This logic leads straight to an active policy of regime change, where the goal is to topple autocrats and put liberal democracies in their place.”

    Consider the relentless number of tweets by a section of the commentariat about Western support for ensuring LGBT-favoring laws in Ukraine, and Mearsheimer sounds prescient. Whatever these people are, their constant revolutionary and internationalist rhetoric would make Leon Trotsky blush.

    Our Job Is to Govern Ourselves First

    Foreign policy realism, on the other hand, enacts a grand strategy based on amoral narrow national interest, one formulated by early American statesmen from George Washington to James Monroe to John Quincy Adams. If it ever comes back as an administrative principle, then it will become the domain solely of the right.

    The aversion against great powers and spheres of influence is an egalitarian instinct claiming all states are equal, regardless of any other variable. This instinct is by definition unnatural and revolutionary. It defies geography, aggregate power, history, and most importantly, narrow nationalism.

    Believing that “History” is progressive, and therefore acting on it to liberate everyone everywhere and promote rights and democracy, then becomes part of an inflated American national interest. The side that does not believe in nation-states or nationalism cannot by definition side with a narrow interpretation of national interest.

    It’s Natural to Defend Yourself

    Carlson is increasingly influential because he sides with something very natural: a human urge to be a nationalist, and therefore opposed to a relentless and crusading global revolution, whether promoting a borderless Marxism or an equally borderless liberalism.

    The ascendant New Right believes in peace through strength, and a very narrow Jacksonian definition of nationalism, in which Europeans pay for their own security and Americans only come at the last moment if things go wrong. In this view, China is a far bigger threat to American prosperity and its land-mass than Russia or Iran will ever be, and defending porous American borders matters a lot more to Americans than Ukrainian borders.

    The other side, a duopoly of Never Trump neoconservatives and liberal-internationalists, wants to continue to allegedly ensure human rights across the globe while neglecting the way of life at home. It may be a noble goal, but ultimately it’s one that the majority of Americans and an overwhelming number of conservatives are tired of after 30 years, thousands of lost lives, and trillions of dollars in deficits.

    The instinct for promoting a global revolution to promote LGBT rights, liberalism, and feminism is as radical an instinct as it can get, and that argument is increasingly opposed by a majority of Americans who simply don’t care enough to spend blood and treasure in places they cannot spot on a map.

    Self-Government Means No Country Is Too Big to Fail

    When Rhodes and McFaul yell about defending human rights in Ukraine, and Carlson and others on the right remind everyone of American failures in pursuing such an unlimited global policy, it’s important to rethink the priors and understand the re-alignment in foreign policy is complete. Powerful realist voices on the left such as Matthew Duss, Stephen Wertheim, Tulsi Gabbard, and Rep. Ro Khanna notwithstanding, it is becoming increasingly clear that true restrained foreign policy realism is connected to a very narrow form of nationalism, and that is fundamentally a reactionary and therefore conservative concept.

    Second, as I wrote recently, “selling” such foreign policy, even to a very instinctively nationalist electorate like America, means talking in a language that most people will get. Carlson (and Donald Trump, for that matter) connected with the normal crowd, arguing about the futility of sending their sons to die for Ukraine, Afghanistan, or Libya. That has more impact than a bunch of Foreign Affairs Snapshots.

    This recent debate on Ukraine, therefore, has brought forth troubling questions for those trying to sell oxymoronic “progressive” foreign policy realism, which took a hell of a beating in the last few weeks.


    Dr. Sumantra Maitra is a national-security fellow at The Center for the National Interest; a non-resident fellow at the James G Martin Center; and an elected early career historian member at the Royal Historical Society. He is a senior contributor to The Federalist, and can be reached on Twitter @MrMaitra.

    Why Are Energy Prices Everywhere So High? Democrats


    REPORTED BY: DANIEL TURNER | JANUARY 24, 2022

    Read more at https://thefederalist.com/2022/01/24/why-are-energy-prices-everywhere-so-high-democrats/

    Mystic Generating Station, Massachusetts

    When President Biden warned of a bleak and deadly winter, he was referring to the Covid-19 outbreak that he promised to “shut down.” While he has failed to curb the virus, his policies have unfortunately been more successful reining in our once thriving energy industry. At the one-year mark of his administration running the Departments of Interior and Energy and determining regulations at the Environmental Protection Agency, anyone paying a bill sees the results. Oil prices have nearly doubled since Biden’s inauguration.

    Despite the longing of green activists worldwide, we are in fact, a fossil fuel-driven economy, and all prices have gone up dramatically: gasfoodutilitiesshippingdurable goods. Biden’s inflation, now at 40-year highs of 7 percent, is now the number-one issue among voters and will no doubt hang over every race this November. The only logical response for an embattled president is changing the narrative. So, Biden bought a puppy.

    To be fair, Biden alone is not to blame. The entire far left is. For years, leftist politicians have attacked the energy industry in the name of “climate change” and for years those of us who know the industry have warned of dire consequences.

    The Left’s Insanity On Energy Supply

    Four years ago, Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey started using her office to prevent pipeline construction. Without a constant supply, power plants turned elsewhere for reliable natural gas: Russia. Despite the absolute insanity of sending Commonwealth checks to Vladimir Putin rather than Pennsylvania, Healey insisted it was better for the climate. Even when the Massachusetts electric grid was teetering on failure, she insisted that transatlantic cargo ships were an improvement over domestic pipelines to a neighboring state. It was insanity then. It’s worse now.

    Massachusetts joins the ranks of many European nations enriching Putin. He has used the surplus to build his army along Ukraine preparing to invade. You didn’t think he was going to build orphanages, did you? It is Vladimir Putin, after all. Maybe the Russian army can have a disclaimer, like the ones Healey applies to campaign ads. “This army brought to you by climate change activists.”

    Writing for Forbes, energy analyst David Blackmon breaks down the current state of electricity generation in New England. Despite the subsidies and the posturing of Northeastern climate-conscious Democrat politicians like Sens. Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, and Green New Deal author Edward Markey, the region has increased use of the very fossil fuels they try so hard to eliminate. Blasted New Englanders and their… heat.

    They are also importing liquefied natural gas (LNG) from the Caribbean because of the now four-year old Healey logic: why buy inexpensively from your friend what you can buy at a premium from a stranger? Add to that the few thousand miles in an ocean tanker and you get a perfect formula for being an eco-warrior.

    Reduced Production

    Supply is becoming an ongoing problem for the energy industry. The United States is currently producing about 1.5 million barrels of crude oil fewer per day than pre-pandemic levels. Worse, investment in the industry is down nearly 25 percent from that period. Why? Biden.

    Fossil fuels are a labor and market-intensive industry, and they rely on government cooperation. That means a secretary of Energy who does not laugh when asked about industry challenges. That means an Interior secretary who does not say publicly “it would be great to stop all oil and gas leases on public lands.” Investors are not going to gamble on the Biden variable, even with oil reaching seven-year highs.

    Government is dropping the ball. It’s mid-January, and we have a lot of winter ahead of us. Between the high prices and the scarce supply, consumers should be worried.

    Lessons from the Texas Freeze

    Last year, Texas experienced a terrible winter storm that shut down its wind turbine electricity production. Sadly, 246 people died in that storm. For decades, Texas Republicans bought into the green energy myths, quietly allowing the notion that fossil fuels were the enemy to fester in their policy hearts. They introduced “renewable energy mandates.” When the storm of February 2021 froze the wind turbines, supporters of the renewable energy mandates quickly came to the green defense. This was not about science or facts: this was about defending ideology.

    “Don’t Blame Wind Turbines” blared Time Magazine, along with USA TodayThe Washington Post, and of course, The New York Times. The laughable, knee-jerk reaction brings up a metaphysical dilemma: if the absence of something is no different than its presence, does it have any value? Or even exist? If the wind turbines failed, and make no mistake they failed completely, but their failure does not matter, then how can they have measurable success?

    All of these outlets blame the fiasco in Texas on natural gas pipelines, as fossil fuels are, and will always be, the reliable backup to green energy. The renewable energy advocates, desperate not to have a failure on the books, contend that in certain conditions natural gas must overperform. During that storm it did not, and therefore is at fault. Renewables are asked to do the bare minimum, demand perfect conditions, and if any variable is introduced, they get to throw in the towel and cast aspersions on the real performers.

    If Texas Republicans fall victim to the green energy siren calls, then what hope does New England have? New England, the bastion of unblemished liberalism, back to burning oil instead of cleaner natural gas, running low on LNG, buying supplies from Russia and the Caribbean, adding to ocean pollution with more tankers, sacrificing American jobs, and enriching Putin.

    Again, 246 people were victims of Texas’ green energy dreams. It’s the nameless, the powerless, the voiceless, who die at the hands of the state because of political decisions based on ideology. And their numbers are going to climb unless there is a major reversal at the federal and state level.


    10 Lies Biden Told During His First Press Conference in Months


    REPORTED BY: JORDAN BOYD | JANUARY 19, 2022

    Read more at https://www.conservativereview.com/10-lies-biden-told-during-his-first-press-conference-in-months-2656436639.html/

    Joe Biden at formal press conference 1/19/22

    President Joe Biden hosted his second solo press conference ever on Wednesday but his attempts to clearly communicate how he plans to fix a country plagued with COVID-19, crime, rising prices, empty shelves, and more were nothing less of a disaster. Not only did Biden, who was once heralded as the chief unifier of the country, use the presser to repeat rhetoric trashing Republicans, he also did his absolute best to put lipstick on the pig that is the struggling U.S. economy. Unfortunately, no amount of lipstick or whoppers can cover Biden’s terrible and devastating approval rating.

    Biden concluded his initial speech by claiming that “the best days of this country are still ahead of us not behind us,” but his optimism is unfounded. Recent polling suggests that only 26 percent of Americans believe the country is headed in the right direction. The majority, however, are left wondering whether Biden will work to fix the myriad of crises he created.

    Here are the 10 lies Biden told during his Wednesday press conference.

    1. The Nation’s Problem Is COVID

    “I know there’s a lot of frustration and fatigue in this country. And we know why: COVID-19, Omicron it has now been challenging us in a way that, it’s the new enemy,” Biden said.

    Not only is COVID-19 a virus that’s been around for years now, therefore not making it a “new enemy,” but it’s also not the only thing plaguing voters’ lives or minds. As a matter of fact, while Biden parades around the Capitol encouraging Democrats to abolish the filibuster and legalize illegal voting practices, he’s failing to address the ongoing Southern border crisis, empty shelves, and rising urban crime.

    2. Wages Are Up

    Early in his speech, Biden claimed that American wages are up. What he failed to address is that real wages have decreased most of the months he’s been in office. Even in months when wages were up, Americans were forced to dig deeper in their pockets to cover their climbing gas, energy, and grocery bills.

    3. Biden Created Jobs

    Biden tried to circumvent the nation’s economic turmoil by claiming that he created more jobs to stimulate the economy. He ignored, however, the role the government played in creating the recession that caused job loss in the first place. And on the role his own administration played in lining the pockets of Americans with federal cash, Biden was mum.

    4. The Supply Chain Crisis Isn’t That Bad

    Biden hardly addressed the ongoing supply chain crisis, leading to the often popular #bareshelvesBiden hashtag, and the nation’s rising inflation which continues to plague voters’ lives as they begin considering who to vote for in the 2022 midterms.

    The president hinted that the “empty shelves being shown on television” were misleading but even he admitted that they are “a few [percentage] points below what it was before the pandemic.”

    5. Inflation Was Already A Thing Before I Took Office

    Biden claimed that inflation was increasing long before he assumed office, but as recent reports indicate, inflation in the U.S. surged to 7 percent in December 2021, the highest level since 1982.

    6. Republicans Want To Steal Minorities’ Right To Vote

    In an effort to promote his campaign to initiate a federal takeover of elections, Biden claimed that Republicans want to take away minorities’ rights to vote.

    “No matter how hard they make it for minorities to vote, I think you’re going to see them willing to stand in line and … keep them from being able to vote,” Biden said. “I think you’re gonna see the people they’re trying to keep from being able to show up, showing up and making the sacrifice that needs to make in order to change the law back to what it should be.”

    7. Schools Aren’t Closed

    “You say we’re not going to go back to closing schools. You said that just moments ago, yet they’re closing in some areas. What do you say to those teachers and principals and parents about school closings?” one reporter asked. “And what can your administration do to help make up for learning loss for students?”

    “First of all, I put in perspective the question you asked, very few schools are closing,” Biden claimed. “Over 95 percent are still open.”

    Yet, since the rise of Omicron in the U.S., reports of schools closing across the country have also risen leaving working parents desperate for in-person learning once more. Thousands of schools that were scheduled to reopen following Christmas break opted for virtual learning until well into January due to panic over COVID-19 spread.

    8. Build Back Better Will Save Americans Money

    During the conference, Biden repeated the lie that his Build Back Better legislative package “would actually lower or reduce inflation.”

    This falsehood has been debunked numerous times but that didn’t stop the president from claiming that his legislation, which actually costs trillions of dollars, won’t cost taxpayers a dime.

    9. White House Reporters Are The Most Informed Americans Of All Time

    Biden told the White House press pool that they are “more informed than any group of people in America.”

    While the statement will probably score him points with openly partisan press pool members, it’s far from the truth.

    For more than a year, corporate media reporters who covered Biden’s rise to the presidency and his subsequent time in the White House have overlooked the administration’s failures to laud the Democrat for being a “moral, decent man.” They’ve wasted their precious Q+As with the president on softball questions framed in a positive light, while also failing to ask key ones. They let Biden ramble and frequently fail to point out the obvious lies lacing his winding answers.

    10. I Didn’t Compare My Democrat Colleagues To Racists

    Biden denied that he compared Democrat filibuster holdouts Sens. Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona to confederate leaders.

    “I did not say that they were going to be George Wallace or Bull Connor,” Biden claimed. “I said we’re gonna have a decision in history.”

    Just last week, however, Biden asked “Do you want to be the side of Dr. King or George Wallace? Do you want to be the side of John Lewis or Bull Connor? Do you want to be the side of Abraham Lincoln or Jefferson Davis?”

    “This is the moment to decide, to defend our elections, to defend our democracy. If you do that you will not be alone,” Biden said.


    Alert: US Tracking Russian Rocket’s Uncontrolled Re-Entry


    Reported  By Jack Davis  January 5, 2022

    https://www.westernjournal.com/alert-us-tracking-russian-rockets-uncontrolled-re-entry/?utm_source=Email&utm_medium=aa-breaking&utm_campaign=can&utm_content=firefly&ats_es=1703275f97009d3a9c3cbb1a34025de5

    A massive chunk of a Russian rocket re-entered the Earth’s atmosphere Wednesday after raising fears of an impact in various U.S. locations.

    US Space Command said in a statement that it was “aware of and tracking the location of the Angara A5/PERSEY rocket body in space,” according to CNN.

    “At this time, the 18th Space Control Squadron assesses the entry point into the Earth’s atmosphere at approximately 2054 UTC (1:54 pm MST) over the Southern Pacific Ocean.” That equates 3:54 p.m. ET.

    “Factors such as the atmospheric conditions and the exact angle of the object as it enters the atmosphere can alter the re-entry location,” Space Command said.

    The rocket was projected to fly over parts of Mexico and Texas on one possible path to its landing, according to NBC.

    YOU CAN READ THE REST OF THE REPORT AT https://www.westernjournal.com/alert-us-tracking-russian-rockets-uncontrolled-re-entry/

    Jack Davis, Contributor, News

    Jack Davis is a freelance writer who joined The Western Journal in July 2015 and chronicled the campaign that saw President Donald Trump elected. Since then, he has written extensively for The Western Journal on the Trump administration as well as foreign policy and military issues.

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