Syria: American senators attack Russian banks

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As a reminder: ‘Sour over Syria: American senators attack Russian banks’

Sep 18th, 2013 – In Cold War style, US Senators have urged the Obama administration to freeze assets of three major Russian banks, ban their activities in the US, and deny employees’ entry into the country on the suspicion they are doing business with the Assad regime.

Having failed to galvanize allies for military action, and politically trumped by President Putin’s proposal for peaceful intervention in Syria, American congressmen have now turned to soft power to regain a grip on the Syria conflict.  The senators are blaming Russia’s banking giants VTB, Gazprombank, and Vnesheconombank -the state development bank known as VEB– for ‘undermining’ UN sanctions by ‘aiding Assad’.

“The Syrians could not conduct this war without Russian financing,” Richard Blumenthal, a Democrat who represents the state of Connecticut, said at a US policy meeting on Iran and Syria at the Bipartisan Policy Center in Washington DC.

“We can freeze their assets. We can stop them from doing business in the United States, prevent their employees from traveling here and, in effect, impose very heavy financial pain on the Russians,” Blumenthal said.

https://www.rt.com/business/russian-banks-senate-syria-006/


Senator Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut is a staunch supporter of Israel

WASHINGTON, February 3th, 2014— The last time the nation’s most potent pro-Israel lobbying group lost a major showdown with the White House was when President Ronald Reagan agreed to sell Awacs surveillance planes to Saudi Arabia over the group’s bitter objections.
Since then, the group, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, has run up an impressive record of legislative victories in its quest to rally American support for Israel, using a robust network of grass-roots supporters and a rich donor base to push a raft of bills through Congress. Typically, they pass by unanimous votes.
But now Aipac, as the group is known, once again finds itself in a very public standoff with the White House. Its top priority, a Senate bill to impose new sanctions on Iran, has stalled after stiff resistance from President Obama, and in what amounts to a tacit retreat, Aipac has stopped pressuring Senate Democrats to vote for the bill.
Officials at the group insist it never called for an immediate vote and say the legislation may yet pass if Mr. Obama’s effort to negotiate a nuclear agreement with Iran fails or if Iran reneges on its interim deal with the West. But for the moment, Mr. Obama has successfully made the case that passing new sanctions against Tehran now could scuttle the nuclear talks and put America on the road to another war.
Senator Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut, a staunch supporter of Israel, is one of 16 Democrats who signed on to the bill, along with 43 of the Senate’s 45 Republicans, bringing it to within a few votes of a veto-proof majority. Now Mr. Blumenthal says the Senate should hold off on a vote to give Mr. Obama breathing room for diplomacy.
“There’s been an unquestionable, undeniable shift in the perception of national security,” Mr. Blumenthal said. “I’m sensitive to the feelings, the resistance, the aversion of the general public to any kind of American military engagement.”
https://www.nytimes.com/2014/02/04/world/middleeast/potent-pro-israel-group-finds-its-momentum-blunted.html

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SYRIA: Intra-Syrian talks

December 14th, 2016

Kerry assures Lavrov US is working with opposition groups that sabotage intra-Syrian talks – Lavrov told his US counterpart that Damascus was ready to give the militants a free exit from besieged Aleppo

US Secretary of State assured Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov that Washington has been working with opposition groups that sabotage intra-Syrian talks, the Russian Foreign Ministry said.
“While considering prospects for a political solution, John Kerry assured [Lavrov] that the US is working with those groups of opposition who sabotage the UN Security Council’s demand to urgently relaunch the intra-Syrian talks without any prior conditions,” the ministry said.
In a phone conversation Lavrov clarified the joint efforts of Russia and Syria aimed at alleviating the conditions of civilians in Aleppo:
“The parties discussed the humanitarian aspects of the situation in Aleppo. The Russian top diplomat clarified the steps that Syrian government has been taking with Russia’s assistance in order to alleviate the conditions of civilians in Aleppo,” the statement reads.
“Sergey Lavrov pointed out the fact the Syrian government had been prepared to assure free access to the encircled militants from Aleppo for a long time but the latter refused to stop combat actions under the impact of Jabhat al-Nusra warlords,” the report said.
“The [Russian] minister called on the US to influence the units of the militant opposition, which Washington gives support to,” it said.

More: http://tass.com/politics/919426

Americans, Remember The McCarthy Trials !

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McCarthyism is the practice of making accusations of subversion or treason without proper regard for evidence. It also means “the practice of making unfair allegations or using unfair investigative techniques, especially in order to restrict dissent or political criticism.” The term has its origins in the period in the United States known as the Second Red Scare, lasting roughly from 1950 to 1956 and characterized by heightened political repression against supposed communists, as well as a campaign spreading fear of their influence on American institutions and of espionage by Soviet agents. Originally coined to criticize the anti-communist pursuits of Republican U.S. Senator Joseph McCarthy of Wisconsin, “McCarthyism” soon took on a broader meaning, describing the excesses of similar efforts. The term is also now used more generally to describe reckless, unsubstantiated accusations, as well as demagogic attacks on the character or patriotism of political adversaries.