Iran and North Korea are trying to bypass the idiots known as President Trump’s foreign policy advisory team and deal directly with Trump. From Tom Luongo at tomluongo.com:
When all else fails with Donald Trump try flattery. That’s exactly what Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif did on Sunday. Because for Iran and North Korea that is, honestly, all that is left.
First it was North Korea, saying talks could resume but only if President Trump’s staff were no longer around.
This weekend Iran took to the airwaves with an interview on Trump’s favorite network, Fox, likely the only thing he’s allowed to watch along with CNN. Good cop/bad cop as it were.
Zarif made his way around the Sunday talk show circuit to make his case to the U.S. establishment. These appeals were to Trump himself to come out from behind his staff and broker honestly with both countries.
“They have all shown an interest in dragging the United States into a conflict. I do not believe that President Trump wants to do that, I believe President Trump ran on a campaign promise of not bringing the United States into another war. But I believe President Trump’s intention to put pressure, the policy of maximum pressure on Iran in order to bring Iran to its knees so that we would succumb to pressure, is doomed to failure.”
IRANIAN FOREIGN MINISTER JAVAD ZARIF ON FOX NEWS SUNDAY
At the same time Iran and North Korea both understand that if Trump doesn’t do this they are moving on with their lives regardless of what the U.S. does next.
Brandon Smith makes the case that Trump will start the wars his “advisors,” or minders, want him to start. From Smith at alt-market.com:
If you learn one rule about how governments function today, it should be that political leaders are usually puppets and the real decision makers are almost never out in the open. The questions is, how does one know for certain that this is the case with a specific leader? His rhetoric might be compelling, he probably knows every buzzword to spark your interest, and he might even throw you some legislative scraps from the political table every once in a while to make you think that he’s going to follow through on his campaign promises, but does he actually believe in the principles he originally championed?
The litmus test for any US president is to examine the type of people he invites into his house. Who does he surround himself with? The cabinet is the president’s constant companion and decision making team. The cabinet is looking over his shoulder and influencing everything he does. If you want to find who is pulling the strings of a president, this is a good place to start.
Once you identify the major players in the cabinet, it’s important to discern what they want. What goals are they trying to squeeze out of a first or second term in the White House? What is the geopolitical or social trend they are creating through their influence? This should not be hard to read…
The problem with our current president, Donald Trump, is not that he is very different from previous presidents, but that he is very similar to them in many ways. While conservatives that voted for Trump did so most of all in the hopes that he would follow through on his promise to “drain the swamp”, he has instead been actively filling the swamp with ever more slimy and parasitic creatures. Whenever one leaves the cabinet, they are replaced with another equally ghoulish character from a roster of banking elites, think tank sociopaths and globalists.
Perhaps John Bolton thought screwing up Trump’s negotiations with North Korea would keep the status quo in place. He couldn’t have been more wrong. From Tom Luongo at tomluongo.me:
The summit between Vladimir Putin and Kim Jong-un is over. And their message was clear.
The U.S. is welcome at the negotiating table but they are not necessary to resolving the situation. Russia, however, is.
Kim went to Vladivostok to build a relationship with Putin and put the U.S. on the spot. Per Putin’s comments after the summit:
We are going to discuss the situation with the US. Russia is always open on this – there are no conspiracies. More than that Kim Jong-un personally asked us to inform Washington of his position and the issues he wants to ask about.
What Kim has done is elevated Russia and Putin to the level of mediator between North Korea and the U.S. Russia is now an equal partner in the process.
And the U.S. has been diminished in its position in these talks.
As I said yesterday, I expected something big to come from this meeting and this was it. Kim is no longer willing to talk with the U.S. directly and they must go through Putin and his staff of professional diplomats to do so.
What’s the U.S.’s response to this? Ambassador to Russia and Deep State mouthpiece John Huntsman said of two aircraft carrier groups in the Mediterranean, “When you have 200,000 tons of diplomacy that is cruising in the Mediterranean, this is forward-operating diplomacy — nothing else need to be said.”
This is the kind of statement that is completely counter-productive and Huntsman knows it. It betrays the kind of thinking that led us to this point.
In fact, it is now exactly that kind of thinking that is precluding a settlement with North Korea. And that’s exactly what John Bolton wants and Trump isn’t strong enough to see the situation for what it is and rein in his foreign policy staff.
The summit this week between Vladimir Putin and Kim Jong-un will be important. From Tom Luongo at tomluongo.me:
Tomorrow is a big day for Korea. The first face-to-face summit of Russian President Vladimir Putin and North Korean Leader Kim Jong-un takes place.
At the same time the 2nd annual Belt and Road Forum kicks off in Beijing.
This meeting between Putin and Kim has been in the works for a while but rumors of it only surfaced last week. But don’t let the idea that this was put together at the last minute fool you.
The future of Korea could be decided by these two men tomorrow.
I know that sounds bold. But hear me out.
And while no one seems to think this meeting is important or that anything of substance will come from it I do. It is exactly the kind of surprise that Putin loves to spring on the world without notice and by doing so change the board state of geopolitics.
- Russia’s entrance into Syria in 2015, two days after Putin’s historic speech at the U.N. General Assembly
- 2018’s State of the Union address where he announced hypersonic missiles, embarrassing the U.S. Militiary-Industrial Complex which accelerated the Bolton Doctrine of subjugating the world
- Flying 2 TU-160 nuclear-armed bombers to Venezuela, creating panic in D.C. leading to the ham-fisted regime change operations there.
- Nationalization of Yukos.
- The operation to secure Crimea from U.S. invasion by marines aboard the U.S.S Donald Cook during the Ukrainian uprising against Viktor Yanukovich.
Both Putin and Chinese Premier Xi Jinping are angry at the breakdown of the talks in Hanoi back in February. It was clear that everyone expected that meeting to be a rubber stamp on a deal already agreed to by all parties involved.
Can Trump maneuver around Bolton and Pompeo, or can South Korean president Moon Jae-in maneuver around the US government to move towards peace and denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula? From Patrick Lawrence at consortiumnews.com:
Patrick Lawrence eyes the U.S. president’s difficulties with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and National Security Advisor John Bolton as he tries to resume peace talks with Pyongyang.
Moon Jae-in’s Oval Office meeting with President Donald Trump last Thursday marked an important step forward for both leaders. The South Korean president appears to have drawn Trump away from the all-or-nothing “big deal” he proposed when he last met Kim Jong-un — an offer we now know was intended to precipitate the North Korean leader’s rejection. Trump won, too: The encounter with Moon has effectively put the Dealmaker back on his feet after the calamitous collapse of the second Trump–Kim summit in Hanoi two months ago. A top-down agreement on the North’s denuclearization is once again within reach.
The importance of the Moon–Trump summit, while eclipsed by news of Julian Assange’s arrest in London the same day, is not be underestimated. Even before receiving Moon, Trump announced for the first time that he is willing to summit with Kim for a third time. While still stressing the North’s complete denuclearization as the U.S. objective, Trump also said he is open to the incremental diplomacy he precluded with his everything-at-once offer in Hanoi.
“There are various smaller deals that maybe could happen,” Trump said before he and Moon withdrew to the Oval Office. “Things could happen. You can work out step-by-step pieces, but at this moment we are still talking about the big deal.”
Was allowing neocons to sabotage his foreign policy part of a deal Trump made to get Mueller off his back? From Mike Whitney at unz.com:
An explosive report by Reuters confirms that John Bolton sabotaged the denuclearization talks between Kim Jong un and Donald Trump in Hanoi in February. According to a March 29 exclusive by journalists Lesley Wroughton and David Brunnstrom:
“Donald Trump handed North Korean leader Kim Jong Un a piece of paper” demanding that Kim surrender all of his “nuclear weapons and bomb fuel to the United States.” Trump also added a number of unrelated demands including “fully dismantling” all “chemical and biological warfare program(s)…. and ballistic missiles, launchers, and associated facilities.” Trump surprised Kim by demanding complete, unilateral disarmament in exchange for a flimsy promise to lift economic sanctions sometime in the future. Naturally, Kim rejected the offer.
Is the CIA trying to sabotage Venezuela and the prospects for an agreement with North Korea? Probably. From Wayne Madsen at strategic-culture.org:
Under the directorship of torture and black site maven Gina Haspel, Donald Trump’s Central Intelligence Agency has returned to its traditional roots of conducting “black bag” operations and disrupting electrical grids through cyber-attacks.
The Venezuelan government has accused the Trump administration of giving the green light for a series of crippling power failures in Venezuela, which affected 22 of Venezuela’s 23 states, including the capital of Caracas. The long-duration power failures were cited by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo as a reason for the US withdrawing its diplomats from Caracas. Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro announced that an international commission assisted by specialists from Russia, China, Iran, and the United Nations would help his country analyze the sources of the Venezuelan electrical grid cyber-attack. Initial cyber-forensics by Venezuela traced some of the cyber warfare being waged against Venezuela to nodes in Houston and Chicago.
In addition to electricity, water service was disrupted in Venezuela. From Miraflores presidential palace in Caracas, Maduro tweeted on March 12: “From the Presidential Command Post, we monitored minute-by-minute the progress of the recovery of the National Electric System.”