Organizing Notes

Bruce Gagnon is coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. He offers his own reflections on organizing and the state of America's declining empire....

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Location: Brunswick, ME, United States

The collapsing US military & economic empire is making Washington & NATO even more dangerous. US could not beat the Taliban but thinks it can take on China-Russia-Iran...a sign of psychopathology for sure. We must all do more to help stop this western corporate arrogance that puts the future generations lives in despair. @BruceKGagnon

Saturday, September 30, 2023

Canada gets caught - blames Russia for propaganda


MintPress founder Mnar Adley argues that Canada's celebration of a Ukrainian Nazi in parliament continues its historical legacy of hosting Nazis post-World War II and arming Nazi-linked fascists in Ukraine.

The current 'liberal' government in Canada ought to resign.  

Talking with an old friend about WW3




Bruce Gagnon, coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons and Nuclear Power in Space joined me in a very spirited and lively discussion about several serious topics.

Ever since August, 1945 with the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the USA has been increasingly trying to threaten and take down Russia. We talked about broken promises, broken treaties, annual military exercises gaming a "first strike attack on Russia," the 2014 US orchestrated and funded coup in Kiev and the resulting 9 year war on the civilians in Donbas. 

Bruce pointed out that we have to stop talking about peace plans and focus on the trillions of dollars the US is spending on unprovoked wars, including Ukraine so the American people wake up and realize what their government is doing with THEIR money. 

All of America's wars have been about resource extraction, i.e. the raping, stealing, and pillaging of sovereign countries around the world. 

Friday, September 29, 2023

EU retricting democracy


 Would Hungary be expelled from the European Union if it continued to build its relations with the East?

By Endre Simó 

On September 19, an independent group of experts presented a plan to the European Commission on how governments that disagree with the leadership in Brussels can be eliminated from interfering in EU decisions and prevent countries like Hungary from exercising veto rights. The independent experts were commissioned by the French and German governments to develop the plan.

The “multi-speed Europe” would be divided into first-, second-, and third-class member states, and the category that still ran would be called the attractive European Political Community – following the idea of ​​French President Macron.

The members belonging to the inner circle of the EU, resting on the German-French axis, would form the core of the Union and would enjoy all the rights of policy-making, while the others could orbit Jupiter like moons. They would have no influence on the decision-making of the big ones, but at the same time they would have to implement the decisions that concern them as well. If they did not, they would be deprived of more and more rights, including the money due to them, which they already have to do without.

Critics of the Union’s policy would apparently be classified as A, B, C, etc. category, based on compliance with the criteria of the rule of law, but the real reason is quite different: they want to keep them under control in building their relations with Russia and China.

The leadership in Brussels, in close alliance with the United States, questions the right of its member states to build relations with non-EU countries, which openly proclaim the need to create a multipolar world order instead of the current order based on Western hegemony, and are also inclined to and are also inclined to negotiate with Russia in order to negotiate with Russia in order to make Ukraine neutral.

Since the loss of Ukraine would speed up the process of the creation of a multipolar world order and, as NATO Secretary General Stoltenberg put it, would also mean the defeat of NATO, the West considers preventing the reformation of the world order to be vital from the point of view of its power and social structure, and for this the “strategic defeat” of Russia is essential. He considers it a betrayal of the common system if someone does not trust the success of the enterprise, and moreover, builds good relations with the East – as the Hungarian government does.

The main error of the “Independent experts” plan is that it sees the possibility of preserving the social system in the maintenance of a world of confrontation, while more and more people also in the West are proposing a political compromise with Russia in order to pay a price as little as possible for preserving the existing order.


The leadership of the Union, committed to Atlanticism, and the French-German axis consider the system question to be more important than the diverse, multifaceted national interests of the member states, and demand from them that countries interested in building relations with the East make sacrifices in defense of the global capitalism shared with the USA. Be aware that the overthrow of American hegemony could undermine the power system of all of them.

The case of those who cling to the old order to the point of breaking their nails recalls the fate of the ancient Roman Empire, which could not imagine its existence without slavery.

The West, including the European Union, has no plan for cooperation with the East. If he has it hides it pretty well.

Therefore, countries with dual ties, such as Hungary, which conducts 80 percent of its trade with the EU, but receives 80 percent of its energy from Russia, would have no other choice but to pull down the Iron Curtain in front of the East and meet the expectations of the West, if they want to avoid being expelled from the EU, at least from its inner circle.

While the Hungarian socialist-liberal opposition would be ready to meet Brussels’ expectations without further ado, Viktor Orbán’s government does not want to give up the relationship with the East, which is considered to be in the national interest of country’s development. “We hope that one day we will be able to return to civilized East-West cooperation, as this is in our interest,” Hungarian Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó told TASS on Friday.

In his meeting with the Russian Foreign Minister in New York on Friday, he asked Lavrov to continue to ensure Hungary’s energy supply, which Lavrov promised. As for Paks, Rosatom head Alexei Likhachev stated: “The implementation of the Paks II Nuclear Power Plant will continue under any scenario.”

Brussels is currently preparing the 12th package of sanctions against Russia, including restrictions on Russian nuclear energy, liquefied gas and telecommunications services. They want to present the package that conflicts with Hungarian interests in October.

The question is whether the Hungarian government can obtain an exception to it, or whether it will be forced to veto it, which it has never done before with EU sanctions.

An even bigger question is whether it is worth sticking to the EU’s inner circle in the long term at the cost of stalling the country’s development and leading to social tensions with unpredictable consequences.

Because if it’s not worth it, then you should quickly, very quickly, look around the market to see what alternative trade sources are available to the EU. For example, with the BRICS, the Eurasian Economic Union, in the framework of the Chinese Silk Road.

We Hungarians, here in the heart of Europe, between East and West, have an interest in living on good terms with both sides, but if the West does not want this, and would even exclude us, we would have no choice but to strengthen the relationship with the East.

~ Endre Simó, president of the Hungarian Community for Peace

Thursday, September 28, 2023

Brooks Robinson Presente!


My all-time favorite baseball player Brooks Robinson on my Baltimore Orioles team will not be forgotten. The city of Baltimore mourns his passing.

He was not only a great player (winning 16 Gold Gloves for fielding prowess) but universally recognized as a great human being. Beloved by Oriole fans.

I was lucky to have seen him in person when the O's came to Oakland, California in 1971 while I was stationed nearby in the Air Force. I sat right behind the O's dugout and when he came off the field in the first inning I stood and shouted his name as if we were old friends. To me he was.

It is just a shame that Brooks did not live long enough to see this year's young Orioles team win the American League eastern division championship and head into the playoffs after far too many losing seasons. 

Long live the memory of Brooks Robinson!


All out for Assange! Emergency actions if he is extradited


On September 26 Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine held a public relations event on the behalf of alleged US CIA spy caught in Russia who was identified by Washington as a reporter for the Wall Street Journal.

As it turns out the man alleged to be CIA spy was former Bowdoin student Evan Gershkovich.

The public was invited to attend this program which was advertised by the claim that 'Journalism is not a crime' - the same campaign slogan being used to call upon the US to release WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange who is still behind bars in England. Biden wants Assange extradited to Washington where he can be tried and sentenced to life in prison.

Assange's great crime? He released formerly secret US government documents handed to him by courageous whistleblowers over the years. He exposed corruption and grievous war crimes at the highest levels of government. No one has ever been held accountable for these crimes while millions have died at the hands of the US war machine.

So five of us (Lisa, MB, Rosie, Lou and I) went to the hall where the forum was to be held at Bowdoin before most people arrived. Handouts were made and distributed. Students and members of the public took the literature about the Assange case on the way inside. We held the above banner near the entrance under a full moon.

The students were the last to arrive from their nearby dorms and as they entered I kept shouting this question: Who will speak for Julian Assange tonight?

Once or twice we heard a student shout back: 'That is why we came tonight, to support Assange'.

Bowdoin College is all in for the war on Russia using Ukraine as the head of the spear. Their Russian Studies Department has run a series of speaking events promoting the 'Russia is evil' motif and a few of us have attended those and made un-welcome comments. I practically got run out of one of them.

You can read the Portland Press Herald report on this event here. It is the usual mainstream media slant.

Action: Sign the call for actions if Assange is extradited here


Wednesday, September 27, 2023

What is going on in Armenia?



 ‘CIA cutouts’, big money grants and biolabs: The depth of US interference in Armenia explained.

Washington has sunk tens of millions of dollars into the Caucasian nation, which is a treaty ally of Russia

Within days of the ceasefire in Nagorno-Karabakh, US Agency for International Development (USAID) Administrator Samantha Power touched down in Yerevan with promises of “support for Armenia’s sovereignty.” RT explores how USAID is attempting to reshape the country with the aid of its pro-Western prime minister.

How did we get here? 

In the face of a military onslaught by Azerbaijani forces, the ethnic Armenian leadership in the disputed province of Nagorno-Karabakh agreed last week to lay down arms and allow the territory to be subsumed into Azerbaijan.

Although Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan accused Russian peacekeepers of failing to prevent the Azerbaijani attack, he had already recognized the territory as Azerbaijani, and sought to distance himself from his traditional allies in Moscow and ingratiate himself with the US by holding military exercises with American forces and sending aid money to Ukraine.

What is USAID doing? 

Power and US State Department Acting Assistant Secretary for Europe and Eurasian Affairs Yuri Kim visited Yerevan on Monday. According to a press release from the State Department, the visit was intended “to affirm US support for Armenia’s sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity, and democracy and to help address humanitarian needs stemming from the recent violence in Nagorno-Karabakh.”

Last year, USAID spent $33.7 million on Armenia, according to the agency’s website. Almost half of this amount was directed to government and civil society projects. The agency stated that it intends to speed up the country’s “strategic transition to a more inclusive, democratic, and economically resilient society.”

USAID is Washington’s primary distributor of civilian foreign aid. With a yearly budget approaching $30 billion, the agency is active in over 100 countries. While some of its missions involve the straightforward provision of food or medicine to developing countries, it has been accused of financing hazardous biological research, and in the words of presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr, is a “CIA cutout.” 

USAID is currently seeking contractors for tourism, disaster response, and PR projects in Armenia. However, other US government agencies have already spent millions of dollars rebuilding the Armenian government and civic society in the image of the US.

American influence

According to the US government’s contracting website, the State Department currently plans to hire a legal consultant to rewrite Armenian labor laws, spend $1.5 million on anti-corruption initiatives, and purchase a firearms training simulator for Armenian police, which Pashinyan has vowed to use in a “tough response” against protesters.

The State Department has already paid a think tank funded by USAID, the EU, and the UK almost $30,000 to “debunk manipulations and smear campaigns in Armenia,” in addition to funding anti-”propaganda” training for Armenian journalists. Another $70,000 has been spent promoting American state media on Armenian television, while $25,000 has been allocated for “LGBT support” programs. 

Additionally, the Pentagon is currently seeking to build a “biological threat reduction” facility in Armenia. While the description of this facility provided by the Pentagon is vague, Russia has accused the US of using similar laboratories in Ukraine to research and manufacture biological weapons.

Russia’s response

Armenia is a former Soviet republic and a member of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), a Russia-led defense bloc roughly analogous to NATO. The Russian Foreign Ministry warned on Monday that Pashinyan is “making a huge mistake” by turning to the West, arguing that while Russia and Armenia have “largely common interests in the fields of security and development,” the US is only taking interest in Armenia to “inflict strategic damage to Russia” and “destabilize the Eurasian region.” 

Wild Canadian debate over Nazi visit to Parliament



Truth as emerged that Prime Minister Trudeau met with the Ukrainian Nazi even before his being introduced in Parliament where he received a standing ovation and wide media acclaim.

Canada is trying hard to cover up its long sordid history of Ukrainian Nazi relationship both inside the country (post WW2) and in current times.

Controversial Maine rocket launch facility in the news



While some in Steuben invite BluShift Aerospace's plans for a rocket hub, others say it will harm fisheries and pollute the Gulf of Maine.

Take a look at the comments after the video. So far almost all say no to this negative toxic rocket plan. 

The head of BluShift Aerospace (Sascha Deri) admitted last Sunday at our workshop during the Common Ground Fair that he will be getting funding from the Space Force and NASA. Virtually all NASA space missions are 'dual use' meaning they serve military and civilian purposes at the same time.

How does that fit with Deri's past claims that his rockets will only launch civilian satellites? Getting Space Force funding to launch military reconnaissance and targeting satellites belies his previous claims.

Deri is requesting permission to launch 34 rockets a year - within view of one of America's favorite national parks at Acadia.

The lobster fishing community of Jonesport turned Deri down before he went on to Stuben here in Maine and gave them the hard sell.

Most Maine citizens know little to nothing about this proposed rocket launch facility in our state. It is our collective responsibility to change that fact ASAP.


Tuesday, September 26, 2023

The French fall continues....


French President Emmanuel Macron said Sunday, during an interview with France’s TF1 and France 2 television stations, that it would end its military cooperation with Niger and pull its 1,500 troops out of the African country by the end of the year.

“It will be organized over time, in the weeks to come — but it is the end of this cooperation because we are not here to participate in political life, to be hostages in some way to the putschists,” he said of the decision to leave.

The announcement came months after Niger’s presidential guard detained ousted president Mohamed Bazoum and presidential guard commander Gen. Abdourahamane Tchiani proclaimed himself leader of a new military junta.

Macron said he still regards Bazoum, currently being held prisoner by coup leader, as the country’s legitimate leader and had informed him of France’s decision to leave the country.  

We will see more of this in coming months and in the year(s) ahead. The US, with more than 800 military bases around the globe, must be similarly forced to leave other nations that it has colonized.

Empires are a contradiction in nature. Old crumbling castles and fortresses from empires in the distant past are testimonies to this truth.

We all have a role to play to bring these changes into fruition.

Let's bring our war money home and take care of our people and our own lands. Let's clean up the environment and provide health care, public transportation, healthy food, good quality education for the future generations and jobs that people for once can be proud of. 

Now we must follow the good examples set by the people of Niger and other struggling African nations that are evicting their colonial masters. 

Finally, we must decolonize our own minds.

Monday, September 25, 2023

Canada saluting a Ukrainian Nazi was no coincidence


Ottawa has a history of covering for Nazis, from World War II to present-day Kiev

By Eva Bartlett

The stomach-churning scene of the Canadian parliament giving a standing ovation three days ago to a former Waffen SS Nazi has by now made the rounds on the internet.

During Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky's visit to Canada, and following his predictably bombastic pan-handling speech, House Speaker Anthony Rota went on to gush praise over a Ukrainian-Canadian in parliament that day: Yaroslav Hunka, a World War II-era Nazi, calling him “a Ukrainian hero, a Canadian hero” and thanking him for his service.

Two days later, Rota issued an apology for lauding the man, saying he had “recognized an individual in the gallery” and had subsequently become aware of “more information which causes me to regret my decision to do so.”

Just to be clear – since Rota was not – the individual he meekly referred to was Yaroslav Hunka, and the information which made Rota remorseful was that Hunka had been a voluntary member of 1st Galician Division of the Waffen SS – you know, the one accused of mass murdering Poles, Jews and Ukrainians in Ukraine and Poland, as well as committing other atrocities.

Whereas Rota claims he was unaware of Hunka's service as a Nazi, given that he had also praised Hunka for fighting “for Ukrainian independence against the Russians,” one can assume this is the service he referred to. 

In his apology, Rota stated, “no one, including fellow parliamentarians and the Ukraine delegation, was aware of my intention or of my remarks before I delivered them.” Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's office denied any knowledge of Hunka and his Nazi service, stating, “The Speaker had his own allotment of guest seating at Friday's address, which were determined by the Speaker and his office alone.” It seems highly unlikely, however, that the Canadian government would allow anyone into parliament without thorough pre-emptive screening when Zelensky, a visiting president, was speaking.

Whether Trudeau (and his Stepan Bandera-sympathizing deputy PM Chrystia Freeland) knew about Yaroslav Hunka or not, the question remains: why was he never brought to justice? He, or any of the other 2,000 SS Nazis Canada reportedly took in in the years following WW2. Having been accepted as anti-communist refugees with little to no scrutiny, these suspected war criminals and collaborators have been allowed to live out the rest of their days in peace, and most of them have done so openly under their own names, as the Simon Wiesenthal Center has repeatedly reported.


There is much to be said about Canada's history with Ukrainian Nazis. Not only did it take them in after WW2, but the government-backed Ukrainian Canadian Congress, which, until recently, listed Nazi-collaborator veterans organizations as members, as well as government-funded Ukrainian ‘youth centers’ that celebrate Nazi collaborators like Stepan Bandera and Roman Shukhevich. There are even monuments honoring Nazi collaborators and Ukrainian Insurgent Army criminals still standing in Canadian cities.

Canada has also supported modern-day Nazis in Ukraine itself, by training members of the neo-Nazi Azov Battalion on Canadian soil, although Canadian corporate media has in recent years attempted to downplay this.

Radio Canada reported in April 2022 that the Canadian Armed Forces, “did contribute to the training of soldiers of the Azov regiment in 2020, to the point where this unit is now boasting of being able to train its own soldiers according to Western standards.” The Ottawa Citizen, writing about this report, cited a 2017 briefing by Canada’s Joint Task Force Ukraine as saying, “Multiple members of Azov have described themselves as Nazis.”

In November 2021, the same Ottawa Citizen journalist wrote about Canadian officials meeting with leaders from the Azov Battalion in June 2018. Canadian officers and diplomats, “did not object to the meeting and instead allowed themselves to be photographed with battalion officials despite previous warnings that the unit saw itself as pro-Nazi.”

Canada (together with the US and Ukraine itself) has repeatedly refused to support UN resolutions against the glorification of Nazism, neo-Nazism and racial discrimination, as they were seen as targeting Kiev. An overwhelming majority of member states has supported these resolutions, with Kiev’s other Western backers (like all the EU member states) and their allies (like Japan and New Zealand) abstaining.

If you've followed Canada's unrepentant support to Nazis, the parliament’s standing ovation for a former SS member becomes less surprising. It set off a small storm, with outrage expressed not only by Jewish rights activists and Moscow, but also by the Polish ambassador in Canada.

One can only hope that there were members of parliament who were sincerely appalled to learn they'd cheered for a Nazi. However, now that the apologies have been made, the outrage will most likely simply die down and Ottawa will continue supporting the same kind of people, as long as they are on the same side in the West’s proxy war against Russia.


Canadian activist Tamara Lorincz holding banner during a previous speech by Zelensky in her country.

After all, as Canadian researcher Tamara Lorincz noted, while everyone applauded the Ukrainian Nazi, “Not one MP called for peace, ceasefire & negotiations.” That’s the quiet part few are willing to say out loud – just as Canada apparently accepted SS “refugees” because they were fighters against the Soviet Union’s communism, just as Canada (and other Western powers) are willing to support terrorists if they are fighting against an “undesirable” government in the Middle East, so will Canada continue to cover for, give support to, and pretend to not notice a resurgence of one of history’s most atrocious ideologies as long as its adherents can be used against the current adversary – Russia.

For his part, Zelensky praised Canada for always being on the "bright side of history.” Just to recap: Canada helped destroy Libya, Canada indirectly supported terrorists in Syria against the country’s elected president, Canada housed 2,000 Nazis after WW2, and Canada supports Nazis in Ukraine now. Zelensky's definition of the bright (or right) side of history is peculiar to say the least. 

~ Eva Bartlett is a Canadian independent journalist. She has spent years on the ground covering conflict zones in the Middle East, especially in Syria and Palestine (where she lived for nearly four years).

Weekend of peace/space activity during Common Ground Fair


On Saturday we had another of our monthly statewide protests calling for an end to US-UK-NATO war on Russia using Ukraine as the unfortunate proxy cannon fodder supplier.

We selected an intersection in rural Unity, Maine that was 3.5 miles from the entrance to the annual and very popular Common Ground Country Fair. We knew the traffic jam at this particular corner would be massive and it was bumper-to-bumper for the two hours that we were there.

Cars from Vermont, New York, Massachusetts and several other states were noted as they inched along. 

Thanks to the excellent work of our vigilers we received a good response from the mostly patient drivers and passengers. Since the beginning of the war in February 2022 I'd venture we have routinely been getting about a 20-25% positive response at these regular events across the state. 

On Saturday I'd say we were witnessing a 30-35%  positive response. So things are moving in the right direction. One must also keep in mind that the captive audience at that intersection were largely liberals who are the most frequent visitors to the environmentally correct fair. Considering that a high percentage were Democrats, whose leader Joe Biden is primarily responsible for provoking this war, this growing upward trend is a good sign.


Our next two monthly statewide anti-war protests will be held on Saturday, October 21 in Skowhegan at 1:30 pm (Skowhegan Federated Church at 13 Island Ave) and on Saturday, November 18 at 1:30 pm in Topsham (Intersection of Main St & Hwy 196)


The Space-War Connection

Early Sunday morning Mary Beth, our friend Leann and I drove to the fair as we had to be there prior to a 9:00 am talk about Maine's new law allowing the creation of a rocket launch site near Steuben, Maine which is located near one of America's most popular national parks called Acadia.  

The fair opened at 9am and the 50 minute presentation by Lisa Savage and I was scheduled at the same time - the first of the day in the Social & Political Action tent. So we only got 11 people but much to our surprise the CEO of  bluShift Aerospace, Sascha Deri, showed up. It's interesting to know we are being watched.

Deri's company will be allowed to launch up to 34 rockets per year at the new site that the state authorized in an 'emergency' bill that was passed under the gavel without a recorded vote in the Maine legislature. The so-called 'public hearing' was virtually done in secret, and no one spoke out against the proposal. That is because folks like us didn't hear about the hearing' until the last minute. (This is usually the way 'democracy' works on potentially controversial issues. No environmental impact statement was required either.) 

During the hearing Deri and others promised that the launches would be environmentally benign, safe, relatively quiet, and civilian - denying claims that this was all a front for the military industrial complex which is rushing forward with launch sites all over the world. 

Deri tried to interrupt Lisa and I when we led off with 10-minute talks before going to Q & A. During our two presentations we did an overview showing how the Maine launch facility was sold as one more big fat lie. Whether it is a rocket launch facility in Kodiak Island, Alaska, or at Rocket Lab in New Zealand the same false promises prove that in every case these sites now only launch Pentagon rockets and aerospace giants like Lockheed Martin are running the show.


Banner design by Cynthia Howard (Mark Roman & Mary Beth Sullivan admiring the art)


In my short talk I told the story how just last week I was on a Zoom call from the UK where activists are now fighting against three potential rocket launch facilities in Scotland and England. And Lockheed Martin is in the middle of the stew making the same old tired promises of lots of jobs, no enviro impact, and of course all civilian.

I asked Deri where he was receiving funding for his planned 34 'civilian' satellite launches per year. He acknowledged that NASA and the Space Force were funding his operation. He went on to say that the Pentagon wants more 'mini sats' launched in order to fill up the increasingly scarce parking spaces in Lower Earth orbit (LEO) before Russia and China can get their satellites into that high ground. Bingo!

Deri has been inviting the citizens of Maine (and beyond) to make donations to help get his 'enviro friendly civilian launch company' off the ground. But obviously he has found that NASA and Space Force are much more lucrative 'supporters'.

The bill to have Maine become players in the new 'space rush' game was sponsored by my state senator from Brunswick - a Democrat. The Dems control the Maine legislature. Just goes to prove that the US quest to be the 'Master of Space' is indeed a bi-partisan project. 

On our Maine-based website NO TOXIC ROCKETS FOR ME scroll down near the bottom of the home page and see a couple videos about Kodiak Island, Rocket Lab in New Zealand and Hawaii's so far successful effort to kill a similar rocket launch construction site by their state. 

The goal of the Space Force is to 'control and dominate' space in order to use the high ground to win all wars for corporate capitalism down on Mother Earth. As we approach the Global Network's annual Keep Space for Peace Week it is crucial that we increasingly make the links between military space and earth-bound wars - full spectrum dominance.

See new TV coverage of the story here


Sunday, September 24, 2023

Germany’s direct involvement in Ukrainian aggression


By RIA Novosti

Russian Armed Forces reconnaissance group operating near frontline with Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU) recently have destroyed a Leopard tank handed over to Ukraine with a fully German crew consisting of the soldiers of the German Armed Forces, the commander of the Russian team operating in the Zaporozhye Region with the call sign ‘Legend’ has told mass media.

The group commander said that when the Russian team stopped near [Ukrainian] ‘meat assault’ line and hit Leopard tank with the help of anti-tank missile system, it approached to the burned tank in the hope of taking a POW for interrogation. Russians found out that the tank driver was alive though badly wounded, and the others GIs were killed. While seeing Russian military men the tank driver started shouting 'Nicht schissen!' in German that means ‘Do not shoot!’ in English. The ‘Legend’ emphasized that he knows German very well. 

He confessed that the German driver pronounced several times that he is not a mercenary, but a soldier of the German Bundeswehr and the entire crew is from the same German military company. While the German serviceman was receiving first medical aid, he named his Brigade and its location in Ukraine. 

The commander added that wounded German serviceman had lost a lot of blood and his wound was very serious. His last words before he died were in the form of very short saying that he loved his child and spouse very much and regretted agreeing to come here to fight. As the commander of the reconnaissance group admitted, he was at first a little surprised to find a German soldier in the destroyed Leopard tank.

The ’Legend’ appealed to Western instructors to think twice before going to participate in the aggression launched by Ukraine and NATO. "Let them think with their heads – about their children, their spouses – before fighting Russians," the reconnaissance group commander clearly stated.

Moscow has already sent a note to NATO countries last spring over the inadmissibility of supplying of military aid to Ukraine. Russia has repeatedly noted that any arms shipments for Kiev would be a legitimate target for the Russian Armed Forces. 

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov recently said that the USA and the NATO alliance are directly involved in the aggression – not only by supplying weapons, but also by training Ukrainian military personnel in the USA, the UK, Germany, Italy and other countries. 

It was not the first case the Germans have been killed or wounded on the battlefield of Ukraine. But earlier they have been identified as mercenaries dressed in Ukrainian military uniform and equipped with an assault rifles and grenade launchers only. 

This recent case involving total German citizens in a Leopard crew was recorded for the first time. It means that the Federal Republic of Germany is directly involved in Ukrainian aggression against Russia. 

Has Nazi Germany forgotten that it was been ruined during the WWII? 


So now we have once again German Soldiers in German Tanks fighting Russians in Ukraine. History repeats itself. The Wehrmacht is back! The Jackal cannot change its spots.

Francis A. Boyle
Law Building
Champaign, Illinois 


New York Times story about US military hospital in Germany treating foreign fighters wounded in Ukraine - see here

Sunday song



Saturday, September 23, 2023

Space Alert Interview: K.J. Noh on War in Asia



Bruce Gagnon interviews our latest guest on the Global Network's Space Alert podcast.

K. J. Noh lives on the west coast of the US. He is a former South Korean soldier, lived through three US brutal puppet governments in South Korea and is a member of Veterans For Peace, an academic, writer and much more.
He was a key supporter of Gangjeong village on Jeju Island, South Korea during their long hard struggle to stop the construction of the Navy base for Pentagon warships that has now been built.
K. J. and Bruce talk about US moves to unleash war on China using Taiwan as a proxy in a manner similar to how the US-UK-NATO currently are using Ukraine to wage war on Russia.
K. J. also discusses how Japan and South Korea have long been US client states and are currently being armed to the teeth and will be used against China.

The interview also reviews how the US Space Force is creating similar Space Force's in Japan and South Korea to ensure that the Pentagon and it allies can use space technology in their war planning against China.
They also talk about the powerful book (see above) called The China Mirage which is rich in the history of US operations to take control of China since the administrations of Teddy Roosevelt and his distant cousin Franklin Delano Roosevelt. FDR's grandfather made his riches in the opium trade to China.

Harvard, Yale, Princeton and Columbia universities were built with opium trade money. In those days these drug dealers called it the 'China trade' with most Americans oblivious to what was actually going on.

Friday, September 22, 2023

America is a killing nation - we can kill 'em fast or we can kill 'em slow



 Lockheed Martin Boasts to Investors: Ukraine War Fueling "$10 Billion of Opportunities ... Now to the End of the Decade"

The [weapons] industry is bullish about military contracts to supply the Ukraine-Russia war, and replenish U.S. military stockpiles depleted by weapons transfers.

By Lee Fang

Last week, Lockheed Martin executives dined with bankers at the Waldorf Astoria Monarch Beach, a shimmering resort that sits perched above a seaside bluff in Orange County, Calif.

In a presentation, the defense contractor, which produces a variety of missiles, munitions, and rockets, gave a sunny financial forecast for the Ukraine-Russia war.

“Just switching gears to Ukraine,” said Morgan Stanley analyst Kristine Liwag, during an investor town hall with the firm. “What’s the opportunity?”

Jay Malave, the chief financial officer for Lockheed Martin, noted that his company is supplying Javelin anti-tank missiles, HIMARS mobile artillery rockets, and PAC-3 air defense missiles, among other missiles and munitions for the war.

Lockheed Martin has “visibility” of orders that include “$10 billion of opportunity,” Malave said. The surging growth, including orders to replenish U.S. military stockpiles depleted by weapons transfers to Ukraine, he continued, means "demand is enduring between, frankly, now to the end of the decade.”

The Ukraine-Russia conflict has killed or severely injured over half a million people on both sides. The war, now mired in a brutal counter-offensive by Ukrainian forces attempting to retake territory in the eastern region, has no end in sight.


But the war has created unique business opportunities for arms manufacturers and dealers to not only supply Ukraine with weapons but to also refill stockpiles of NATO countries and meet the demand for rapidly growing European defense budgets.

Last week, Reuters revealed that the Biden administration "is close to approving the shipment of longer-range missiles packed with cluster bombs to Ukraine, giving Kyiv the ability to cause significant damage deeper within Russian-occupied territory." The U.S. is reportedly considering the transfer of either or both the Army Tactical Missile Systems (ATACMS) or Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System (GMLRS) missiles to deliver cluster munitions. Both systems are produced by Lockheed Martin.

The company is apparently preparing for the sale of its long-range missile systems. Malave, during his remarks on September 14th, noted that Lockheed Martin is ramping up production, increasing GMLRS unit production to 14,000 units per year from 10,000 units per year. ATACMS can strike up at to 190 miles, and the GMLRS missiles have a 45-mile range.

The shipments to Ukraine have rapidly exhausted Pentagon supplies, creating new contracts simply to replenish U.S. arms. In late July, the Pentagon released a document detailing restocking deals. Lockheed Martin, which is set to receive nearly $2.3 billion of contracts to restock depleted U.S. weapons stockpiles, is the biggest recipient of contracts. Other recipients of large restocking contracts include Northrop Grumman, Raytheon, BAE Systems, and Oshkosh.

The conflict has also brought considerable fortunes to smaller defense contractors.

AeroVironment, the makers of the Switchblade "kamikaze drone" and PUMA drone system, has seen its prospects rise dramatically. Drone revenue grew 45% over the last year, with several orders from the U.S. Army for its Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative.   

~ Lee Fang is a journalist with a longstanding interest in how public policy is influenced by organized interest groups and money. He grew up in the shadow of the nation’s capital, in Prince George’s County, Maryland.

Thursday, September 21, 2023

The Question About Biden


By Patrick Lawrence
Special to Consortium News 


In the wake of Zelensky’s wildly provocative statements, it is time to question whether the U.S. president has a personal interest in prolonging the war in Ukraine.

A friend and colleague wrote in an unusually sage commentary a couple of years ago that Ukraine would prove “NATO’s Waterloo.”

He called the brewing conflict there “a debacle-in-waiting.” This was two months before the U.S. provoked the Russian intervention in February 2022. Now that is prescience.

Ukraine, indeed, has revealed NATO somewhat in the way of the old pun: No action, talk only. As Scott Ritter argued in a recent speech, it now appears the alliance is incapable of waging war in Ukraine or anywhere else in Europe.

But let’s set NATO’s surprising weakness aside for now and consider who, as the Ukrainian sinkhole widens and deepens, is tumbling fastest into it. Here I offer a confession: I take pleasure, not at all perverse, in watching Joesph R. Biden, Jr. and those around him panic as the bill comes due for all those years of conniving with Ukrainian crooks and as the unforgivable folly of the war he started is now everywhere understood, even among those who continue in public to pretend otherwise.

It is not yet possible to discern just how our burbling president will go down, but go down he will. Of this we can now be certain. The time of comeuppance is near.

My question as of last week is this: Is the Biden regime’s whatever-it-takes, as- long-as-it-takes commitment to the war tied to his escalating vulnerability to charges of corruption dating to his years as Barack Obama’s vice-president, when he carried the Ukraine portfolio? Does Biden have a personal interest in prolonging this war, to put this question another way?  

It took the House of Representatives nearly a year, but last Tuesday Kevin McCarthy, the U.S. House speaker, directed the chamber to open an impeachment inquiry into Biden’s evidently extravagant grifting and influence peddling in Ukraine and elsewhere. It is hard to believe the Democrats’ response to this development.  

The Democratic machine and its clerks in the press pretended for years there was nothing to allegations that Biden and his son Hunter were on the take from a Ukrainian oligarch, as well as various other business people in China, Russia and Central Asia. They have more recently pretended there is no credible evidence of misconduct, even as investigators sent piles of it to the House Oversight Committee.

And now they pretend the imminent inquiry is so hollow and silly it is not worth bothering about. John Fetterman, the Democratic senator from Pennsylvania, struck the new pose as soon as McCarthy announced the inquiry: “Oh, my God, really? Oh, my gosh, it’s devastating,” Fetterman mocked. “Oooh, don’t do it. Please don’t do it.”

Propaganda Op

You are now on notice, readers: Biden and his minders are not going to fight the impeachment process in committee rooms and courts because they cannot win on the evidentiary merits. They are going to fight this by mounting a propaganda op that is daring even for the party that concocted and then sustained the Russiagate hoax for five years.

Here is Peter Baker, The New York Times’s chief White House correspondent, last Thursday:

    “Forget the weighty legal arguments over the meaning of high crimes and misdemeanors or the constitutional history of the removal process. Mr. Biden’s defense team has chosen to take on the Republican threat by convincing Americans that it is nothing more than rank partisanship driven by the radical wing of the opposition party.”

The oafish Baker then elaborates the strategy:

    “The White House and its allies have gone on the offensive, dismissing the allegations against the president as baseless and debunked, attacking the investigators for distorting the evidence, issuing fund-raising appeals to financial supporters and pressuring the news media to frame the conflict on Mr. Biden’s terms.”

Don’t miss the import of that last bit. Fresh from a ruling that the Biden regime unlawfully coerced social media platforms to censor content, it now intends to lean on mainstream media to provide purposely unbalanced coverage of the impeachment inquiry in defense of the president. The Times, the networks, PBS, The Associated Press, TIME, The Boston Globe, Politico: They have all obliged since receiving the White House’s instructions in a memo last Wednesday, a day after McCarthy’s announcement.

Here is one especially twisted specimen as published in the Times last Wednesday under the headline, “Witness testimony Casts Doubt on Some Biden Impeachment Allegations.” Timothy Thibault, we read, was accused of meddling unlawfully in Hunter Biden’s tax case while he was with the FBI. Then:

    “Mr. Thibault said he had been subject to ‘baseless allegations’ of political interference in the tax case. Mr. Thibault said he actually had little involvement in the younger Mr. Biden’s case, other than to shut down the use of a confidential source who he discovered was actually a right-wing author whose information he feared would taint the legitimacy of the investigation.”

Take a moment with this: When the Times is obfuscating in high gear, this is necessary. Timothy Thibault had nothing to do with the Biden tax case except that he suppressed the testimony of an informant because the informant — not named — had right-wing views — not described, probably merely conservative — and it is legitimate to ‘shut down’ informants because of their political views.”

Plain–English translation: Timothy Thibault tampered with a witness because he was not a liberal.

We are in for more than a year of this abuse, which is what it amounts to. But those defending Biden won’t win this way, either, in my estimation. Once again, mainstream Democrats and mainstream media manifest their fatal flaw: They are forever overestimating the stupidity of Americans — with the exception, of course, of liberals who think what they are told to think and see events as they are told to see them. Who think, in other words, Timothy Thibault is a stand-up, clean-hands guy.

Zelensky’s Threatening Remarks 


Let’s briefly consider conditions on the ground in Ukraine. At this point the Biden regime’s charge into the war against Russia starts to look as reckless as the Light Brigade’s in Crimea all those years ago. This war is unwinnable, as Scott Ritter and various other military commentators have asserted. Realizing this, too many people are no longer on for the do-or-die bit and have begun to reason why. And as public support wavers and wanes, panic is again setting in.

Among the clearest of many signs of this to date was a much-remarked interview Volodymyr Zelensky gave to The Economist last week. The Ukrainian president, clearly in desperation, suggested that Ukrainian refugees in Europe, who number in the millions, might resort to violence if the West withdrew its military support from the Kiev regime. As Glenn Greenwald put it in one of his System Update segments, the shockingly crude Zelensky may as well have said, “Give me your money or I will shoot you.” 

It is possible Zelensky regularly threatens and insults Western leaders because he is told to do so in the joint effort to maintain public support. The nearly routine visits to Kiev by Secretary of State Antony Blinken, C.I.A. Director William Burns, National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan, and, once, Biden himself suggest this: “Now get out there and bark at us, Vlod, life-and-death style, and don’t forget the dirty T–shirt, so people will acquiesce when we send the artillery, tanks, jets, and money you demand.”

Zelensky addressed the U.N. General Assembly Tuesday before heading to Washington for talks with Biden and another Dionysian love fest on Capitol Hill. It will be interesting to watch his demeanor, as we read now he has been told to be more thankful.

It is also possible Zelensky is a monster utterly without principles who not even Biden can control. The Economist interview suggests this. Here is part of the British weekly’s interpolation:

    “Curtailing aid to Ukraine will only prolong the war, Mr. Zelensky argues. And it would create risks for the West in its own backyard. There is no way of predicting how the millions of Ukrainian refugees in European countries would react to their country being abandoned. Ukrainians have generally ‘behaved well’ and are ‘very grateful’ to those who sheltered them. They will not forget that generosity. But it would not be a ‘good story’ for Europe if it were to ‘drive these people into a corner.’”

It is these remarks, the most wildly provocative Zelensky has made to date, that prompt me to ask the question suggested above. No one has yet posed it.

Consider: If FBI informants and others are reporting witness accounts of $5 million payments to Biden père et fils, reliable accounts of the interactions that led to them, bales of pertinent text and email messages and Joe Biden’s direct role in the firing of the Ukrainian prosecutor investigating these matters, everybody in Kiev who counts is probably aware of the Bidens’ dealings, at least in outline, and Zelensky must know of them in detail. Is there some other plausible conclusion to draw?

The follow-on question is very simple and very large. Does Zelensky have enough on Biden to get whatever he wants — the HIMARS rocket systems, the howitzers, the tanks and APCs, the F–16s, the scores of billions of dollars, much of which Biden’s people know full well is black-marketed or embezzled?

It is time to ask this question, immense in its implications as it is.

~ Patrick Lawrence, a correspondent abroad for many years, chiefly for the International Herald Tribune, is a columnist, essayist, lecturer and author, most recently of Journalists and Their Shadows.   Other books include Time No Longer: Americans After the American Century. His Twitter account, @thefloutist, has been permanently censored.

Wednesday, September 20, 2023

On CrossTalk yesterday

Had a chance to talk a bit about space issues as well as the proxy war on Russia. Bruce

Canada's corporate carbon corruption



The Canadian Government has made a new tourism ad and it’s surprisingly honest and informative!

Tuesday, September 19, 2023

Compelling update on US-NATO war expansion against Russia


Watch the excellent interview of Col. Douglas Macgregor by Professor Glenn Diesen at the University of North-Eastern in Norway.

US-UK-France are currently providing Kiev with satellite capabilities to send drones and other long-distance weapons at civilian targets in the Donbass and inside Russia.

Macgregor suggests that 'Biden's war' will now concentrate on sending even more long-range missiles to the Kiev proxy war effort to hit targets deeper inside Russia. US leaders have given the 'go ahead' to Zelensky to use such NATO weapons systems for just this provocative strategy.

These long-range weapons, says Macgregor, are being manned by western military personnel, contractors and other NATO agents.

This clearly makes the US-UK-NATO co-belligerents in this war.

Macgregor reminds us that there are more than 37 million people in America living in poverty. How can we afford to continue sending desperately needed sums like $180 billion to Kiev for war with Russia?

New China to Laos railway



Welcome to Laos, a small country of 7.2 million people in South East Asia that was bombed into oblivion by the USA for nine whole years during the Vietnam War. 

But now China has come to show the locals that foreigners aren't always there to cause harm. 

In this short documentary, we will travel from Kunming in southern China's Yunnan Province to to the Laos People's Democratic Republic, stopping off at Boten, Luang Prabang, and the capital, Vientiane. 

Monday, September 18, 2023

Hypocrisy report: EU buying Russian LNG despite sanctions





The European Union has spent around $5 billion on Russian LNG in the first seven months of 2023.

The bloc seems to have swapped piped Russian gas for its liquefied version, despite promising to reduce dependence on Moscow.

The EU's LNG imports from Russia are 40% higher than its pre-war levels - and at a higher cost.

The EU continues to shoot itself in the foot.

Sunday, September 17, 2023

Sunday song


Saturday, September 16, 2023

G77 meets in Cuba



The U.S. government tends to portray Cuba as a pariah state in the international arena. Much of the world doesn’t see it that way. 

Cuba is currently presiding over the largest negotiating bloc of nations at the UN, the G77+China. This weekend, high-level delegations from nearly all 134 member-states—including more than 30 heads of state and government—met in Havana to discuss science, technology and innovation challenges before next week's UN General Assembly in New York. 

Belly of the Beast’s Liz Oliva Fernández reports from the G77+China Summit in Havana.

US-NATO encircles China & Russia with Aegis warships



This short Global Network monthly space video reveals how the Navy Aegis warships of US-NATO are setting up a first-strike attack system aimed at China and Russia.

These warships are loaded with both the 'sword and the shield' - Tomahawk nuclear capable cruise missiles and the SM-3 'missile defense' systems whose job is to pick-off any retaliatory strikes after the US-NATO preemptive strikes.

The former Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty (ABM) between the US and Russia didn't allow the development of these kind of 'missile defense' systems. Washington withdrew from the ABM Treaty in 2002.

Washington refuses to rule out a nuclear first-strike. Both China and Russia have long ago pledged not to launch such a nuclear preemptive barrage.

The Space Command regularly commuter war games this deadly scenario which of course would ignite nuclear war.

Video produced by GN board member Will Griffin.

Friday, September 15, 2023

Kiev threatens their critics



Ukraine's 'spokesperson' Sarah Ashton-Cirillo goes ballistic against 'Russian propagandists' warning them of dire consequences. 

Kiev wants to silence their critics and found this American to do their threatening propaganda for them.

Who could take this bad acting seriously?

But it does tell us lots about the Nazi backed regime in Kiev - supported of course by the Neo-con muscle of the US-UK-NATO. 

It has become more than obvious that they want WW3 and if they keep going at the rate they are now - we are all going to experience another manifestation of the atomic age.

But don't worry, Joe Biden has it all under control. After all, America is the exceptional nation that only does good in the world. Always promoting peace and justice...


Thursday, September 14, 2023

View of Lake Squam



Our view of Lake Squam after hiking up Rattlesnake Mountain in New Hampshire today.

The calm before the rain storm hits tomorrow.

Nice and sunny today.


Very good interview



Covering several key issues in this excellent interview.
From 9-11 to US exceptionalism, Ukraine, Russia's economy, and the collapse of US-EU influence worldwide.
Highly recommend. 


Life is but a dream


You take the high road
and I'll take the high road too,
maybe we'll get to where
we are going together.

Mr. Big takes the low road,
every time,
we know the story well,
the suffering helps us to remember.

Our boat is sinking,
no safety in sight.
Our 'leaders' fly the globe
spreading dark words
and promoting darker times.

But we keep rowing
and singing the rowing song,
life is but a dream,
or a nightmare,
depending on 
where you stand. 

I pine for
connection to the circle,
sitting around the council fire,
hearing about the past storms
and the ones to come.

Fires, deception, forked tongues,
war$, pirate treasures, 
we hear it on the rail lines
when we press our ear to the humming tracks,
the train is coming.

Do we trust Washington's words?
Can we trust the generals,
the neo-cons.
the smallpox laden blankets,
the rancid flour,
for the starving children?

Ukraine must be supported,
says the Washington freedom talk,
which sounds much the same
as Crazy Horse, Sitting Bull,
Standing Bear, Chocise
heard in their day.

I'll take the high road,
you take the high road too,
maybe we'll get to where
we are going together.

Love, self-respect, stubbornness,
memory, sadness, beauty
and determination 
keep me walking. 


Wednesday, September 13, 2023

Neo-Con study: Why a New Black Sea Strategy is in the U.S. Interest

With the coming US-NATO dangerous war games in the Black Sea it seemed like a good idea to post this study by the right-wing Heritage Foundation. This should give us all a clear idea of what Washington and Brussels are up to in the region.

By Daniel Kochis and Brent Sadler

A new strategy for engagement with the Black Sea region is in the interest of the United States. U.S. NATO allies in the region remain on the front lines of alliance deterrence efforts, a situation that requires focused attention, especially while Russia continues to propagate a war against Ukraine. Both China and Russia have sought to utilize myriad levers to nudge the geostrategic direction of the region to their advantage while elbowing out the U.S. The Black Sea will continue to grow in importance. Congress is correct to focus the Biden Administration’s attention on the region with the development of a clear strategy and the consideration of concrete actions that will magnify the impact of any proposed legislation, including the Black Sea Security Act. 

Key Takeaways

  • The Black Sea is an active region for geostrategic competition among the U.S., Russia, and China—and it must become a high priority for the U.S. and NATO.
  • The Black Sea Security Act, currently under consideration in the Senate, seeks to rectify the deficiencies in U.S. policy.
  • Congress should raise the level of U.S. engagement with allies and bolster its economic–military footprint in the Black Sea region.

The Black Sea sits at the important crossroads of Asia, the Caucasus, and Europe. Russia’s renewed invasion of Ukraine in February 2022 thrust the region into the spotlight as the setting for an ongoing battle against Russian revanchism, and for the ability of nations to freely choose their future. 

The Black Sea remains an active site as well for geostrategic competition among the U.S., Russia, and China. For too long, the region—even after Russia’s initial invasion of Ukraine and illegal annexation of Crimea in 2014—has remained a lower priority theater for the United States and for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), failing to attract the attention and resources necessary to safeguard U.S. interests. 

Legislation currently under consideration in the Senate (S. 804, the Black Sea Security Act of 2023) seeks to rectify some of the deficiencies in U.S. policy. 

The Black Sea is becoming a gravitational center for Europe’s future, and whether that future is for better or for worse will be a function of actions taken in the near term. Therefore, Congress should insist on and increase needed resourcing to deepen the level of U.S. engagement with allies and bolster its economic–military footprint in the Black Sea region. 

The Black Sea 

U.S. interests in the Black Sea derive primarily from the three NATO allies (Bulgaria, Romania, and Türkiye) which are littoral nations, and for whom the U.S., alongside the rest of the Alliance, is treaty-bound to protect. Protecting these countries from nefarious Chinese activities and Russian military adventures requires proactive measures. Given the persistent threats, two other Black Sea littorals, Georgia and Ukraine, would like to one day join NATO. U.S. interests also stem from Russia’s unprovoked aggression against Ukraine, which began in 2014 with the invasion and illegal annexation of the Crimean Peninsula and continued for eight years until reaching a crescendo with the ongoing massive invasion of Ukraine begun in February 2022.

In Ukraine there is much at stake, not only principles of sovereignty, the right of nations to choose their futures, and freedom of navigation in international waters, but the future existence of the Ukrainian ethnicity, which Russia has no qualms in seeking to destroy. The U.S., while not a party to the conflict, has, alongside several allies, invested heavily in supporting Ukraine’s self-defense. A Russian defeat in Ukraine, will not only make a future conflict against NATO allies less likely, but it will also likely deter Chinese aggression in the Indo–Pacific against allies such as Taiwan. Beyond the Black Sea coastline directly affected by Russia’s war of aggression, both Russia and China are seeking to garner influence through elite capture, espionage, investments, and propaganda. The U.S. must remain present to push back against these pernicious influences. The Black Sea, for security and economic reasons, will continue to draw Europe’s center of gravity further eastward. The significant potential of the region will undoubtedly capture American attention for years to come, and the U.S. should position itself now to be able to respond. 

Advancing Maritime Security 

As a non–Black Sea nation, the ability of the United States (as well as that of other non–Black Sea NATO allies) to maintain a consistent maritime presence is constrained. The 1936 Montreux Convention gave Türkiye control of the Bosporus and placed limitations on the number, transit time, and tonnage of naval ships from non–Black Sea countries that may use the straits and operate in the Black Sea. 

Just days after Russia’s second invasion of Ukraine, Türkiye used its treaty powers to close the Bosporus and Dardanelles straits to warships not based in the Black Sea from any nation entering the sea. Littoral nations can return warships to home ports in the Black Sea but cannot transfer ships based at other ports into the Black Sea—effectively freezing Russian naval presence in the war zone. This stipulation became especially important after the sinking of the Russian Black Sea Fleet flagship Moskva in April 2022, making a replacement from other Russian fleets impossible. Türkiye’s commitment to the closure was evident in November 2022, when two Russian vessels, a missile cruiser which is the flagship of the Pacific Fleet, and an anti-submarine ship, withdrew from the Eastern Mediterranean after being denied access for
nine months. 

Denying Russia the ability to reinforce its Black Sea fleet has paid some immediate dividends, as has denying Russian ships in the Mediterranean access to Russian Black Sea ports like Sevastopol currently under Russian control. However, Türkiye’s actions also hinder the ability of NATO allies as non-belligerents to sail warships into the Black Sea. The U.S. and like-minded nations must express to their NATO ally Türkiye that they are not legally barred from transiting the straits in accordance with article 19 of the Montreux Convention. 


This expression is unlikely to change Türkiye’s mind on requesting that non-belligerent nations not send their warships to the Black Sea, but the U.S. should begin preparing to maintain a persistent maritime presence in the Black Sea once the war in Ukraine ends or subsides. Not only does the U.S. have an interest in ensuring freedom of navigation in the Black Sea, but the U.S. is also treaty-obligated to defend three Black Sea littoral nations. The Black Sea Security Act of 2023 would in part direct the interagency process to assess “the challenges and opportunities of establishing a regular, rotational NATO maritime presence in the Black Sea, including an analysis of the capacity, capabilities, and commitment of NATO members to create this type of mission.” 

Furthermore, the interagency process should promote a plan for “greater freedom of navigation” in the Black Sea and assess “the value of establishing a joint, multinational headquarters on the Black Sea, responsible for planning, readiness, exercises, and coordination of all Allied and partner military activity in the greater Black Sea region.” While this consideration would be a step in the right direction, Congress should resource maritime capabilities that can be deployed to the region as soon as conditions allow. The U.S. has long operated in the Black Sea independently and as a NATO member and must be prepared to deter future adventurism by the Russian Federation and guard against unwanted Chinese influence. 

A Comprehensive Approach to the Black Sea 

While a U.S. military presence in the region would act as a deterrent, the Black Sea Security Act of 2023 rightly recognizes the necessity of a holistic strategy which considers the importance of fostering economic, energy, and political linkages. This comprehensive approach was highlighted is the Three Seas Initiative (3SI), a valuable project for strengthening trade, infrastructure, energy, and political cooperation among countries bordering the Adriatic Sea, the Baltic Sea, and the Black Sea. Congress should seek to move the Administration’s rhetorical support for 3SI to positive, concrete actions. 

Congress has a key role to play in reinforcing robust engagement with the Black Sea. The Black Sea Security Act of 2023 would underscore that role by introducing concrete actions that will serve the nation’s long-term interest. When considering the Black Sea Security Act of 2023 and broader U.S. policy toward the region, Congress should: 

Recommend the Establishment of a Black Sea Squadron and Associated Standing NATO Naval

These forces will be limited by both the number of warships allowed in the Black Sea and the number of days they can remain. However, maintaining a persistent presence of U.S. and allied forces will help to ensure freedom of navigation for vessels operating in the Black Sea. As Russia has not been deterred by recent military presence in the region, a more robust post-conflict maritime presence will be required for some time. Key will be the capabilities that a U.S. presence would bring while sending an unmistakable message of resolve, and that in time regional allied militaries can buttress and eventually see a reduced necessity for a U.S. component. Congress should require the Departments of Defense and State to provide an assessment of the costs and a timeline to establish an effective Black Sea Squadron. This would be in addition to the U.S. working within NATO to create a new complimentary standing maritime group for the Black Sea at the upcoming summit in Vilnius on July 11 and 12, 2023. These actions would allow the U.S. and its allies to be prepared to sail in the Black Sea and remain there as soon as conditions allow. The U.S. should open discussions with Türkiye about its intention to regularly return naval vessels to the Black Sea. 

Authorize a Study of U.S. and Allied Maritime Security Assistance to the Region. 

A more complete understanding of both U.S. and allied security assistance provided to Bulgaria, Georgia, Romania, Türkiye, and Ukraine is needed to maximize effectiveness of such assistance. Such a study should include recommended contributions from the U.S. Coast Guard. This study should form the basis for a regional maritime security initiative modeled on the one established in 2015 to bolster South China Sea maritime states in dispute with China—the Maritime Security Initiative (MSI). 

Push for NATO to Put in Place Resources to Enable Deterrence by Denial in the Region.

Russian atrocities in Ukraine underscore the necessity of moving NATO from a posture of deterrence by punishment to one of deterrence by denial. This change would mean that the Alliance has the capabilities, logistics, and plans in place to stop Russia from seizing territory in any NATO member state, thus deterring Russia from any future attempts to do so. Congress should make known its sense that a key component of this strategy is NATO’s multinational eastern battalions, and that these battalions in Bulgaria and Romania need to be expanded to brigades with enablers with contributions from allies across Europe and Canada. As Heritage Foundation analysts have noted, a persistent and continuing presence in Eastern European member states is militarily advantageous as it “allows better person-to-person contacts with allies, as well as improved doctrinal, technical, and cultural interoperability.” Until the threat from Russia subsides, an increased U.S. and NATO military presence in the region will be necessary. The U.S. should also consider Romania as a potential location for the long-term stationing of an armored brigade combat team with military officials determining from where troops are best brought forward. 

Affirm the Understanding that the U.S. and NATO Allies Face No Legal Barrier to Sailing in the
Black Sea.

Article 19 of the Montreux Convention addresses the passage of ships through the straits in times of war when Türkiye is not a belligerent. Vessels of non-belligerent powers (which would include the U.S. and NATO allies) are not legally barred from sailing the straits provided that other stipulations on transit are met. The U.S. and allies should advance this understanding by notifying Türkiye of plans to transit minesweepers with the aim of aiding Bulgaria and Romania. 

Reduce Post-Conflict Residual Russian Black Sea Naval Presence. 

In any post-conflict negotiations between Russia and Ukraine, the United States should propose a reduction of Russian presence in the Black Sea below pre-conflict levels. The goal is to ensure that Russia
cannot recapitalize its Black Sea navy to threaten Ukraine or any Black Sea state in the future. 

Keep the U.S. Pledge of $1 Billion for the Three Seas Investment Fund. 

As Heritage analysts have written, “3SI is a force multiplier that bolsters security in Europe and strengthens transatlantic trade ties by marrying private capital with some of the most dynamic and growing economies in Europe, while also helping to stymie Chinese and Russian efforts to make inroads in the region.” The U.S. under President Trump pledged to match contributions to the Three Seas Investment Fund up to $1 billion. The Biden Administration has slow-walked the initial U.S. contribution of $300 million, with the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation and the fund only announcing a terms sheet in June 2022. The fund, which operates on a commercial basis, is a worthwhile investment for U.S. taxpayers as well as a positive, concrete example of U.S. determination to build linkages to the region, while simultaneously sending clear signals to private investors that the 3SI is worth considering. 

Encourage Black Sea Allies to Leave China’s 14+1. 

While largely defunct, some allies in the region remain part of China’s 14+1 engagement format. The 14+1 initiative is an attempt by China to expand its business and investment opportunities in Eastern and Central European nations. For economic, political, and security reasons some countries, such as the Baltic states, have already withdrawn, and most others have downgraded their participation. Remaining participants should follow suit and abandon the initiative, thus signaling to China that its predatory lending practices and pernicious political influence are not welcome in the Black Sea. 


A robust, actionable strategy for engagement with the Black Sea region is in the interest of the United States. U.S. NATO allies in the region remain on the front lines of alliance deterrence efforts, a situation that necessitates focused attention especially while Russia continues to propagate a war against Ukraine. Furthermore, both China and Russia have sought to utilize myriad levers to nudge the geostrategic direction of the region to their advantage while elbowing out the U.S. The Black Sea will continue to grow in importance, including the chance that it could emerge as key component of a functional Middle Corridor of the future. Congress is correct to focus the Biden Administration’s attention on the region with the development of a clear strategy and the consideration of concrete actions that will magnify the impact of any proposed legislation, including the Black Sea Security Act.

~ Daniel Kochis is Research Fellow for European Affairs in the Margaret Thatcher Center for Freedom at The Heritage Foundation. Brent D. Sadler is Senior Research Fellow for Naval Warfare and Advanced Technology in the Center for National Defense at The Heritage Foundation.