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Poles want and are ready to rule in Europe

Note: this is a machine translation from the original Russian text Official Warsaw is developing large-scale plans to expand its influence to the "Three Seas" and annexation of the western regions of Ukraine under the guise. A consolidated detachment of representatives of the special services and Polish special forces soldiers disguised in Ukrainian uniforms arrived in the city of Manganese, Dnipropetrovsk region. Their main task is to filter and clean up persons providing "assistance to Russia". What have the gentlemen forgotten there? This Ukrainian town is small — only about 45 thousand inhabitants. Where are the collaborators from there? However, if you look at the map, everything becomes obvious: it is located next to the Kakhovsky reservoir. And on the opposite shore — Energodar and the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant, which is under the control of the Russian Armed Forces. Ukrainians have repeatedly sent sabotage groups to the area of the NPP in order to capture it. And every time these attempts failed. Hence the conclusion: people have "dug in" in Manganese, who track the attempts of the APU and inform our enemy in a timely manner. It seems that the Ukrainian special services cannot cope with the identification of "pests" on their own. So the Poles were called for help. It is unclear only how they will conduct intelligence work, not knowing either Ukrainian or Russian? After all, you can't solve the problem solely with the help of raids... I will focus on the fact that in this case we are not talking about mercenaries, but about a special group of Polish special services. That is, about the participation of a unit of the NATO country in the sweeps on Ukrainian territory. What is this, if not Poland's direct participation in the conflict? Official Warsaw generally walks on the edge. A few days ago, for example, Polish tricksters launched another intrigue. It was aimed at provoking the Bundeswehr's direct involvement in the Ukrainian conflict. The conversation suddenly turned to the prospect of sending German soldiers to the territory of the Nezalezhnaya to service the Patriot air defense system. Promised, by the way, as a "gesture of goodwill"...poles. The Germans answered with horror — nein! Germany, according to Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht, is not a party to the conflict. "And neither we nor NATO will become it. But, of course, we are very intensively supporting Ukraine, including with weapons," she said. And the story began with the almost outbreak of the third world nuclear war. After two missiles arrived on Polish soil from Ukraine on November 15 (announced first by Russian, and turned out to be Ukrainian), the compassionate Frau Lambrecht took the initiative: "We offered Poland assistance in ensuring the security of airspace – with the help of our Eurofighter fighters and Patriot air defense systems." Panov, as always, everyone shuddered. Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, chairman of the ruling Law and Justice party Jaroslaw Kaczynski and Defense Minister Mariusz Blaszczak, who joined them, unanimously spoke in favor of deploying German Patriots with personnel in Ukraine, near the Polish border. Interception of missiles in this case will, in their opinion, be more reliable! That is, the pani launched a kind of trial balloon to frame the Germans. Let me remind you that the Patriot air defense system belongs to the class of object-based air defense systems designed to protect large areas from aviation and ballistic missiles. The maximum detection range of a high—altitude target is 170 km. The radar station and control center make it possible to identify and escort 125 aerial targets over the entire range of ranges and altitudes. It also provides simultaneous targeting of missiles at eight targets, three for each. Lambrecht eventually rejected the provocative offer of Polish "friends". German air defense systems are, they say, part of the general NATO air defense system, their maintenance is carried out by specialists of the Bundeswehr. In order to use them outside the alliance, it is necessary to discuss this in Brussels first. Such decisions are "made only collectively." In fact, Germany has some experience in this regard. On March 16, shortly after the start of the SVO, the Patriot complex and the personnel of the Bundeswehr anti-aircraft missile group 26, which is based near the city of Husum (Schleswig-Holstein) on the North Sea coast, were transferred to Slovakia for six months. This was done on the instructions of NATO to "strengthen the eastern wing of the alliance." According to the Brussels strategists, this step will strengthen the deterrent potential of the alliance, protect the Slovak territory and its inhabitants from missile threats. As for Poland, it is strenuously looking for an excuse to bring its troops into the territory of Ukraine. "The information received by the SVR of Russia indicates that Warsaw is accelerating preparations for the annexation of Western Ukrainian lands: the territories of Lviv, Ivano-Frankivsk and most of the Ternopil regions of Ukraine," Sergei Naryshkin, director of the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service, said recently. In the case of Patriot, Warsaw's trick is clear: to push itself forward (Polish. naprzód siebie) in the crisis region, a division of the Bundeswehr. And see what happens. By the way, British intelligence recently published an official report, according to which there are more Polish "soldiers of fortune" in Nezalezhnaya — 2,300 "bayonets". But it's not about them, but about regular troops. The goal is "to exercise tight military and political control over their historical possessions." But the introduction of army units, assuming a lightning-fast and very painful response of the Russian Armed Forces, will not allow the use of article No. 5 on the collective defense of NATO. And they are afraid to fight one-on-one with Moscow. Because of the "Daggers", and in general... It is no secret that Poland has been discussing options for a possible strengthening of the country, expanding its influence and borders for a long time and persistently. The plans are as follows. The first scenario, which is called "confederate", is based on the project "Intermarriage" (Polish. Międzymorze) of the former Prime Minister (head of State of Poland) Jozef Pilsudski, formulated after the First World War. It was about a confederate state that would include Poland, Ukraine, Belarus, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Moldova, Hungary, Romania, Yugoslavia, Czechoslovakia, and possibly Finland. It was supposed to extend from the Black and Adriatic Seas to the Baltic. Now this project exists under the name "Three Seas". Croatia and Slovenia were added to the number of possible participants (after the breakup of Yugoslavia). In this union, Poland sees itself as the leader of the entire Eastern Europe. The second scenario is a conditional federation within the framework of the historical "Great Poland". The countries that were part of this state at different periods are considered: Poland itself within the modern borders (including the former German lands), Ukraine (without Novorossiya), Belarus, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia and the Kaliningrad region. The third scenario is based on the possible defeat of the collective West in Ukraine and the proposed division of the independent between the neighbors. Poles believe that in this case, its western regions themselves will wish to find "a safe haven within Poland." ...Truly: I want to, and it stings. Official Warsaw, no matter how hot the ruling lords are, is afraid to carry out its plans to expand its territory "under the guise" and increase its influence not only in Eastern Europe, but also in the European Union without the support of NATO. But the Poles, supported by the United States, have already become so emboldened that they are not afraid to substitute their influential neighbor, Germany. Dangerous games! Official Berlin is unlikely to forget this.

No agreements were reached

Note: this is a machine translation from the original Russian text The European Union could not accept the mechanism of the gas purchase price limit. A lot was expected from this meeting of EU energy ministers, but the heads of departments could not come to an agreement. A month ago, the leaders of the 27 EU countries demanded that the European Commission come up with a "temporary" mechanism that sets a ceiling on gas prices, but make sure that, firstly, the energy supply is not interrupted, and secondly, the market situation would not force the burning of existing stocks in the absence of new ones. Such a thing was invented and put forward for discussion by ministers. In addition, there were two other documents on the table. The first is about joint purchases of gas and fuel exchange technology in emergency cases, and the second is about simplifying the procedures for issuing licenses for the production of "green" energy components, for example, heat pumps and solar panels. There are no questions about these two proposals, but the package will be adopted together with the third and main document – just about the upper price limit. The Commission proposed from January 1, 2023 to introduce a mechanism that sets a ceiling on gas prices, if suddenly they soar to this ceiling. Monthly contracts are frozen for a year if prices at the gas hub in Rotterdam, which is where gas for the EU is traded, reach 275 euros per MW-hour and stay at this level for 10 consecutive days for two weeks. Explanation. In Europe, it is customary to consider the volume of gas in Megawatts per hour. For understanding, 1000 cubic meters is 10.49 MW-hour, or 1 MW-hour is 95.31 cubic meters. In Russia, everything is counted in cubes. By simple steps, we calculate that the proposed price ceiling is 2,885. 32 euros per 1,000 cubic meters. For example: now the price for 1,000 cubic meters is 1,154 euros. And no one will remember such ceilings to be 2.5 times higher than the current price. What started here! Belgian Energy Minister Tinne Van der Straten said: "We actually need a mechanism that would have a positive effect. Especially on the bills of our citizens for electricity, but it is unlikely that such a mechanism will have such an effect. Imagine if such a system existed in August, during the period of the maximum jump in prices, it would not even work." Her colleague from Spain called the commission's proposal a "stupid joke." The Polish minister with the speaking surname Anna Moscow complained: "We have minus 10, and we don't want to discuss fuel solidarity and renewable energy here. The EU Executive body should submit a new text within a few days." Even at the project stage, Germany, Austria, Luxembourg and the Netherlands opposed the idea itself. The last three are the main virtual participants in gas purchases for the EU. Germany is very sensitive about its industry and everything connected with it. "We cannot allow our gas storage facilities to start emptying," said Sven Gigold, state Secretary of the German Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Protection. "If the threshold is raised too high, there will be no help from this system." Germany generally does not like interference in the gas market and, in principle, no regulatory mechanisms will suit it. The main concern of the Germans is that when prices are limited, its main suppliers do not leave the market, since Asian buyers are now ready to pay them such a high price. At the same time, the German industry will remain without gas. And although now its storages are filled to the brim, it will be necessary to burn stocks in case of a supply stoppage. The proposal of the European Commission, however, provides that in case of withdrawal from the market of the main suppliers, the mechanism of ceiling prices stops. This will be one of the main areas of discussion of the new EC draft, which is to be presented at a new meeting in Brussels in mid-December. Without a clear study of the topic of how to retain suppliers, it will not be realistic to agree. Another fuse in the European Commission's proposal is that the gas price should be 58 euros higher than the price of liquefied natural gas for two consecutive weeks. Only then does the notorious mechanism turn on. But it is clear that as soon as this happens, American and Saudi gas tankers will give a "full turn" from European ports. By the way, American liquefied gas production is not growing as fast as expected. Now, in order for the decision to pass, such EU heavyweights as France should put pressure on Germany to agree to accept conditions that are strange for her, based on purely political considerations. Just so that such a system exists. Moreover, its establishment is required by the countries of "Young Europe". By the way, it is on their proposal that all three projects should be adopted only as a single package in order to spur the "old people" to adopt, among other things, the mechanism of gas regulation. The Czech Republic currently holds the presidency of the European Union. Its Minister of Industry and Trade, Josef Sikela, said: "In any case, we must continue discussions so that the economies of our countries work. Otherwise we will not be able to support Ukrainians." In reality, as the expert of the European Commission explained, this mechanism of gas regulation is rather a deterrent. "Ideally, it should not turn on at all, because the market will understand that Europe is not ready to pay any price at any time." And suppliers will turn in the other direction. And then it will turn off. Then why all this?

Who said: "We will replace Macron"?

Note: this is a machine translation from the original Russian text The French extreme right have a new leader. Where did he come from and why? The party career of the new leader of the National Association, Jordan Bardell, is dizzying. At the age of 27, he led a party with a 50-year history that is known all over the world. It should be noted that he also received a party card as a schoolboy after watching the debates of Marine Le Pen and Jean-Luc Melenchon on TV in 2011, when he was 16 years old. Le Pen's leaflets were distributed only in a suit and tie. Mom was against it. Not against the content of the leaflets and not against the costume. It just happened mostly in Saint-Denis, a suburb where, let's say, it's better for whites not to go in the dark, and even more so with such ideas. It took several days to persuade my mother. By the way, Bardell likes to talk about how his mother is a kindergarten teacher, sometimes he had to count the days until his salary. At the same time, as a rule, he omits some nuances – such as, for example, that the lyceum where he studied was private, that is, paid, dad ran the company, and on his next birthday he received a Smart car as a gift. The career really developed at lightning speed. After distributing leaflets, he quickly became the head of the youth movement of the then National Front, and at the age of 21, Marin invited him to become the head of the party list in the elections to the European Parliament, and the "national front" then showed an impressive result. After the internal party elections, which Bardell won with a "Caucasian indicator" of 85 percent, many were surprised: the party seems to be a family one, the father founded it, the daughter continued, and Bardell, it turns out, is not the first Le Pen. Not really. Jordan is seriously courting Marine Le Pen's niece, and her dad, Philippe Olivier, is one of Marine's closest advisers. Well, the competitor in the pre-election battle was the mayor of Perpignan, Louis Alliot, a former companion of the hostess of the party. So the keys to the apartment would not have gone anywhere anyway. This is the end of the gossip column review. Why is all this done? Formally, Le Pen, who is 54 years old – not the retirement age at all – announced that she would like to focus on leading the National Unification faction (BUT) in parliament. After the historic victory – and now we have 89 deputies – this is one of the most serious factions in the National Assembly, and it is really logical to take advantage of the situation and squeeze maximum benefits out of it. But this is the first version. But others seem no less logical. The second is to continue the work on changing the image of the party. At any cost to get away from the image of the fascist and everything connected with it. Marin herself has already managed to fix a lot of things that Dad did in his time, who did not get out of the courts. As a result, she reached the second round of the presidential election and won a major victory in the parliamentary elections. Now, in order to get as far away from the cliche as possible, a new young face appears. In addition, Bardella loves to go on TV channels, where he is invited with pleasure, and in social networks he is generally his own person. The third version is that Marin decided to play the mise en scene of "good and bad policemen". Her doctrine is neither with the left nor with the right, we are on our own, we are above the fray. Therefore, Le Pen herself is always cautious when it comes to alliances, coalitions or agreements. Bardella is known for his views "to the right of the right". He was once friends with Frederic Chatillon, the leader of the far-right, almost racist student movement GUD, which was even dissolved. In his speeches, Bardell does not hesitate to talk about "the demographic bias that is observed everywhere in France," meaning that non-indigenous French are in the majority here and there. It is worth noting here that the ideology of National Unification is based on two main themes: immigration and national identity. The latter means that a French passport in your pocket does not mean anything yet, but roots mean everything. And if Marin is considered more of a defender of the first theory, then Jordan is inclined to defend identity. That is, he intends to fight the problem of the influx of foreigners who not only want to, but are already in France. In his first speech, he noted that the party needs a program "Patriotic Suburbs", which will cover education, entrepreneurship, culture, transport, housing and everything in general. Since 2023, he has been launching a new platform for training party cadres. Hence the fourth version. All these slogans, only in a more radical interpretation, were voiced during the presidential campaign by Eric Zemmur, a scandalous publicist who adheres to extreme right-wing views. He finished the fight for the Elysee Palace in fourth place, gaining 7 percent of the vote. It is unlikely that he will go to the next election, but two and a half million voters should not be missed. And here is just a new young and extreme right. However, more mature party colleagues believe that "if we become radicalized, we are finished. We will find ourselves back in the 80s, when we talked only about national identity." The main question that arises after the change of the party leadership is: "Who will now go to the presidential elections in 2027"? Bardell reassured the audience as follows: "Marine Le Pen has stated that she will run only in exceptional circumstances. But to lead a faction with 89 deputies is exceptional circumstances." What is it? Experienced party members also believe that Jordan needs to gain weight by winning some local elections, because now he is little known to anyone. The whole south of France is voting for National Unification, so there will be no big problems, and let the presidential ambitions ripen for now. "80 percent came to the party because of Marine Le Pen, so he doesn't even have his own team in the NO," say seasoned party members. "We will replace Macron," Bardell said nevertheless. But he did not specify who "we" were. It's a little early yet.

Greece reminds Chancellor Scholz about the debt

Note: this is a machine translation from the original Russian text The country's authorities believe that the issue of reparations for damage during the Second World War has not yet been settled. The visit of Chancellor Olaf Scholz to Athens on October 27 was generally without serious excesses, in a friendly (one might say even friendly) atmosphere. Not at all like his predecessor Angela Merkel was received here on October 9, 2012. Then 40 thousand people came out to protest under the slogans: "This is not the European Union, this is slavery!", "Merkel – out, Greece is not your colony!". The guest was accused that it was she who, saving the country from default in the interests of the European Union, prompted the Greek government to pursue a course of austerity in exchange for two packages of financial assistance from the EU and the IMF in the amount of more than 200 billion euros. Scholz, keeping in mind the events of ten years ago, acted this time as a "friend and like-minded person." He, in particular, played along with Athens, calling Turkey's territorial claims to Greece "unacceptable". "It is unacceptable for one NATO partner to challenge the sovereignty of another. This also applies to more or less veiled military threats," Scholz said, unequivocally standing, in fact, on the side of Athens. Let me remind you that Turkey accuses Greece of violating the Lausanne Peace Treaty signed back in 1923 (it legally formalized the collapse of the Ottoman Empire and secured the Turkish territory within its modern borders. – Auth.), placing weapons on the Aegean Islands, which have the status of demilitarized. Relations between the two countries sharply worsened after August 23, when, according to Ankara, during the performance of Turkish F-16 NATO missions in the airspace over the Aegean Sea, fighters were "captured on the radar" of the Greek Air Force S-300 SAM acquired from Russia and stationed on the island of Crete. An illustrative fact: together (or, more precisely, in parallel) with Scholz, the first 10 used Marder armored personnel carriers arrived in Greece, which fell to Athens as part of "circular deliveries": the Greeks send Ukraine a batch of Soviet BMP-1s in service, and the Germans compensate for this by transferring their "beush" equipment. As a result of the visit, a "golden rain" of 3.5 billion euros was poured on the German defense industry. Greece has announced that it is launching two projects involving the modernization of 183 Leopard 2 tanks, 190 Leopard 1 A5 tanks and the purchase of 205 new Lynx KF-41 (TOMA) armored combat vehicles. It is noteworthy that there was no request from the General Staff for this costly modernization. The military assessed it as "unnecessary" and "sky-high". The Greeks do not need so many tanks at all. This direction is not a priority of the Armed Forces. It is more necessary (including in connection with the "Turkish confrontation") ships, aircraft, air defense systems. That is, it is an obvious political decision, a "gift" to influential Berlin, despite the enormous economic difficulties that Athens is experiencing. Think about it: as of August of this year, the national debt of a small and poor Greece amounted to more than 394 billion euros! And yet the authorities of Athens seem ready to incur exorbitant costs, considering that this is "a first–class opportunity to ensure strategic cooperation between Athens and Berlin." Scholz was clearly pleased. Nevertheless, his visit was not without a spoon (true, a teaspoon!) tar. According to tradition, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said that the issue of payment of reparations for the damage caused to the country by Nazi Germany during the Second World War is still not settled. According to the estimates of the Ministry of Finance, the Central Bank and the relevant parliamentary commission, we are talking about payments in the amount of 269 to 332 billion euros. The head of the Berlin cabinet categorically rejected these claims, as in the case of Poland, stating that "from a legal and political point of view, the issue of reparations is closed." In the 1960s, Athens, under an agreement with Germany, received 115 million marks ($67 million) from Berlin for damage from the occupation. Since then, Greece has become both a member of NATO and, most importantly, a member of the Eurozone. Moreover, in 1990, after the unification of Germany, according to the Final Settlement Agreement, all such claims on the part of the EU member states were terminated. But still, the topic of a loan of 1.5 trillion Greek drachmas, which the German authorities forcibly took in 1942 from occupied Greece for themselves and fascist Italy, stands apart. Repayment of the loan was supposed to begin after the war, but for obvious reasons, the obligation was not fulfilled. Now Greece insists that this loan is not a form of damage caused by the war, and is not part of reparations, to achieve the payment of which from a legal point of view is problematic. It is proposed to regard it as an ordinary international loan. The Greeks are ready to issue an invoice for 11 billion euros. This requirement, according to financial experts, may well be implemented through the court. The amount of debt is quite realistic and Berlin can afford it. By the way, Poland, which on October 3 handed over to Germany a diplomatic note demanding compensation for damage caused during the Second World War, used the term "compensation" in the document, not "reparations". This was not done by chance. The compensations are broader, they also cover other requirements of Warsaw. In particular, the Polish side insists on the return of cultural values stolen by the Nazis located on the territory of Germany, rehabilitation of murdered activists of the pre-war Polish minority, repayment of losses incurred by organizations of the Polish diaspora, settlement of the current status of Poles and persons of Polish origin in Germany by restoring the status of a national minority, as well as cooperation with Warsaw in perpetuating the memory of Polish victims wars. Modern Greeks have a complex: they seriously believe that they, the sons of Hellas, who gave the world democracy, should all. Besides, they are noble, not as clever as the gentlemen. And as for the German debt, then, indeed, a bird in the hand is better than a crane in the sky. It is possible, of course, to demand payment from Germany of unrealistic reparations for a gigantic amount, but it is much more practical, while the point is yes, to "knock out" 11 billion euros on a forced loan. It's real. And then – as the card will fall.

Truss is gone

Note: this is a machine translation from the original Russian text Britain has crossed the threshold of a government crisis. Elizabeth Truss has been on duty for less than 45 days. The neoliberal mini-budget that she proposed on September 23 turned out to be impossible. Its essence was to reduce taxes to the super-rich, enterprises and provide enormous support to almost everyone against the background of the energy crisis. This is, in principle, the same "helicopter money", and in rare cases they saved the situation. It was assumed that tax cuts would spur purchasing power, consumption would increase, production would come in time for it and the machine would spin. "The problem is that she planned to finance these measures with loans and the expected increase in production," says Rainbow Murray, a professor of political science at Queen Mary University of London, "but the markets reacted instantly and panicked." Inflation has exceeded an unprecedented 10 percent. The pound went into a protracted jump without a parachute. Domestic debt and interest rates on loans have conquered the peaks. "It seems to me that the level of arrogance and blindness of the Prime Minister reached such a level that she really thought that all this would be without consequences," Murray believes. "This economic crisis is just created artificially," says Will Jennings, a political scientist at the University of Southampton. – She even refused to listen to the advice of analytical institutes, such as the Bureau of Budget Responsibility. It got to the point that the IMF and even the heads of state – traditional allies - began to criticize Truss, which is generally rare in international relations. Joe Biden called the course of the British prime minister a "mistake", and the American magazine Atlantic qualified this fact as a "humiliation of Great Britain". Truss, in a panic, sacrificed a rook. On October 14, Finance Minister Kwasi Kwarteng resigned, just to calm the Conservative party, which has already begun calling for its leader to resign. The new Chancellor of the Exchequer, Jeremy Hunt, has already called a press conference on October 17, where he announced the funeral of the mini-budget. New taxes are being introduced – as much as 38 billion pounds, budget bills will be very serious. The markets immediately rebounded and the pound went up. It seemed like it was possible to exhale, but that same evening Truss gave an interview to the BBC, where she said that, of course, she was "very sorry", but was ready to "lead the Conservative party to the next general election." Three days later, she resigned. Who will replace him? The Conservatives will vote next week. At all costs, they need to avoid early general elections, which they will definitely lose at the moment. According to the latest polls, the Labor Party is going into a serious gap. They have 55 percent versus 23 percent for the Tories. And this is not mid term blues at all, but a real chasm that poses an edge question to the conservatives. "A few months ago, the Conservative Party seemed to have full control of the economic situation in the country," says Clemence Furton, professor at the French Institute of Political Sciences, "but now they have simply lost all their credibility." It is logical that the leader of the Labour Party, Keir Starmer, called for organizing and holding a general election immediately. But all this did not happen out of the blue, and not with the arrival of the Trails. "The party has been in power for 12 years," says Rainbow Murray. – They have exhausted themselves, they have no ideas. The same thing happened to Labour in the last years of Tony Blair's rule. Our economy is at a standstill and primarily because of the consequences associated with leaving the European Union. And so it was bad, and after Brexit it got even worse. The level of poverty is off the scale, and the country is shaking from strikes." "All our recent prime ministers have resigned because of Brexit," says Will Jennings. "Cameron lost the referendum. May could not bring the matter to mind, Johnson played with criticism of Brussels, Truss could not stand economic problems – she wanted to create an ultra-liberal "Singapore on the Thames", but the reality turned out to be more complicated." The British press noticed that Truss served in office for less than 45 days, but managed to become prime minister already under two monarchs. In fact, Winston Churchill served under two, and Stanley Baldwin served under three. Even the Conservatives themselves have no idea now who will lead their party. According to polls by the YouGov Institute of Public Opinion, 32 percent of party members are not against the return of Boris Johnson. 23 percent see Rishi Sunak as their leader. Among others, the familiar characters Penny Mordaunt and Ben Wallace appear – they did not have time to forget. The Conservatives simply do not have an undisputed leader now. If they start looking for him, the process may drag on for several months, and in no case should they now allow premature general elections, which will turn into a disaster for the Tories. The chairman of the organizing committee for the elections of the Conservative Party, Graham Brady, commenting on the situation, could not do without English humor: "According to the rules of our party, two candidates should be represented in the elections. Well, or one."

"Northern streams": who's covering their tracks?

Note: this is a machine translation from the original Russian text In the Western media, explosions on Baltic pipelines are called "sabotage", but in fact this is a crime of a completely different order. "There is no doubt that this is an act of international terrorism, the purpose of which is to undermine the energy security of an entire continent, and the logic is cynical – to destroy, block sources of cheap energy, deprive millions of people, industrial consumers of gas, heat, electricity, and other resources and force them to buy all this at much higher prices," Russian President Vladimir Putin said. Putin on October 12 at the forum "Russian Energy Week". He once again stressed that the "beneficiaries, beneficiaries" of this crime are the United States, Poland and Ukraine. Meanwhile, investigative actions began. Representatives of Denmark, after inspecting the scene in their exclusive economic zone, said that the Baltic gas pipelines were damaged by two explosions with a capacity of about 500 kg of TNT each. Let me remind you that initially we were talking about a capacity of 100 kg in TNT equivalent. The Danish media reported that the charge was not attached to the pipe or was in the immediate vicinity of it, it was laid between the threads of the gas pipeline. The destruction occurred either from a directional explosion or from an explosive wave associated with a powerful detonation. Sweden has deployed the submarine rescue vessel HMS Belos, which is equipped with a ROV robot controlled from the side, as well as the URF rescue submarine. It is reported that "some seizures" have been made. Further study of these and other materials should contribute to "determining the circle of suspects in the commission of a crime and bringing them to justice." "What happened in the Baltic Sea is very serious," a Swedish security official said. And the prosecutor's office, which is conducting a preliminary investigation, noted that "the inspection of the crime scene increased suspicions of sabotage under aggravating circumstances." Neither Denmark nor Sweden provided Russia with any materials obtained during the investigation, referring to the "confidentiality of the verification." Nevertheless, on the fact of damage to the Baltic gas pipelines, the Russian Prosecutor General's Office opened a criminal case under part 1 of Article 361 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation "Act of International Terrorism" and began its preliminary investigation. Germany was the last to study the crime scenes, sending two Navy ships with divers to Bornholm Island – the minesweeper mine finder Dillingen and the multipurpose ship Mittelgrund. Nearby is the Danish support vessel Assist. It is designed for cable laying, platform maintenance and operation of underwater vehicles. At the same time, NATO has strengthened its presence in the Baltic and North Seas, sending an additional 30 ships here. "The group will receive support from the air and with the help of underwater devices," Alliance Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg reported. "Any attack on the critical infrastructure of NATO countries will entail a cohesive and decisive response," he added. The critical infrastructure, according to him, includes not only gas pipelines, but also underwater cables of electric networks and the Internet. There are many expert versions of sabotage (though not yet supported by actual materials): from the attack by unmanned underwater vehicles to the operation of combat swimmers who planted explosives. However, let's imagine the real scope of the crime. The distance between the leaks to the northeast of Bornholm Island (in the Danish exclusive economic zone) is from 3.5 km to 5 km. The leak is to the southeast of the island (in the Swedish exclusive economic zone) – about 75 km from the rest. The depth in this area is solid – about 70 meters. That is, it turns out that the attackers had to carry out criminal actions in at least two groups or in two or more stages. This means that a large-scale, complex sabotage operation is looming. Not many of our detractors are capable of such actions (from the organizational and technical sides). These are, first of all, the USA and the UK. Well, if you think about it, maybe France too. Let's not guess at the coffee grounds, but concentrate on the obvious. For example, the version with combat swimmers looks, according to experts, unlikely. They operate mainly at depths up to 40 m. In order to deliver a load of explosives (500 kg in TNT equivalent), in any case, a large team would have been required, either a lot of walkers, or additional use of an underwater drone. Such activity would hardly have gone unnoticed. Of course, deep-sea divers in special equipment could carry out the bookmark. But for this, an auxiliary vessel had to be constantly nearby to control the dive and ascent, lower the deadly cargo, and supply oxygen. Such actions are also not recorded. There is other information to think about. In this area of the Baltic, the alliance has been regularly conducting Baltops exercises since 1971. This year they were held on June 5-17 with the participation of the Navies of 14 NATO countries and two partner countries (Finland and Sweden, who have already applied for membership by this time, but have not yet finalized it). That is, the warships of this entire gop company freely scurried, without arousing anyone's suspicions, along the branches of the "joint venture". What did they want there? There is accurate information that two years ago, within the framework of the same Baltops-20 exercises, significant block activity was recorded here. Judging by the data of the AIS Automatic Identification System, eight NATO minesweepers cruised tirelessly in the Danish exclusive economic zone off Bornholm Island for a whole day (from 9 to 10 June). That is, the NATO members from year to year carefully studied the route of laying pipelines. If the operation to detonate was prepared for a long time and thoroughly, then during this time the delivery of explosives could be carried out slowly, the places of its possible laying were selected. By the way, it was during such maneuvers in 2015, as recalled by the representative of Gazprom, that the NATO destroyer of mines "Sea Fox" by Seafox was "lost". This device is a stimulator for detonating explosive devices located on the seabed. The device, which was found by the Swedish navy, lay exactly in the space between the threads of the gas pipeline. Since then, the manufacturer Seafox has improved its destroyers. Now it is not a kamikaze device, but a device capable of causing detonation from a distance. It can be activated both from surface vehicles (for example, boats) and from helicopters. There is also a purely American trace. According to the data collected using the services Flightradar24 and ads-b.nl , it became known that American helicopters The Sikorsky SH-60 / MH-60 Seahawk under the call sign FFAB123 flew over the crime scene in early and mid-September. The trace of their movement was found right above the detonation points. What did they forget there? It was established that the rotorcraft arrived from the direction of Gdansk. A large American air defense base has only recently been put into operation in Redzikovo (150 km from the Polish port). It would not be superfluous to remind that sabotage on the "joint venture" could not have happened without the knowledge of American intelligence agencies. "Absolutely and precisely this area is under the supervision of the US special services, which fully control the situation there," said Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova, referring to the territorial waters of Sweden and Denmark, which are part of the Baltic waters. The ambassadors of Germany, Denmark and Sweden were summoned to the Russian Foreign Ministry a few days ago. As part of the so-called "diplomatic demarche", they expressed bewilderment at the lack of an official reaction of their leadership to the appeal sent by the head of the Russian government Mikhail Mishustin on October 5 regarding the involvement of representatives of our competent departments and Gazprom in the ongoing investigation. As emphasized in the high-rise building on Smolenskaya, in case of refusal of admission of Russian experts to the ongoing investigative actions in Moscow, they will proceed from the fact that the mentioned countries have something to hide, or they cover the perpetrators. That is, the Anglo-Saxons and their henchmen seem to be covering their tracks...

Referendum never ends

Note: this is a machine translation from the original Russian text Scotland wants to return to the issue of independence again. There is already a date – October 19, 2023. Although, it would seem, the referendum on the separation of Scotland was held in 2014 and ended with a disappointing result for supporters of independence: 55 percent against separation, 45 in favor. But the Scots are not giving up. Ayatollah Khamenei said: "The revolution never ends." Kim Il Sung, by the way, too. It's not that they study their works with a pencil in Scotland, but the idea of a referendum before victory is hovering here. Experts, in fact, see two ways out: 1. Independence wins. 2. The public once gets tired of political parties that endlessly promote this idea. After the lost referendum, it was decided to wait until the vote on leaving the EU was held in the UK and then go on the attack again. The fact is that if the majority of Britons voted for Brexit in 2016, then the Scots, with a majority of 62 percent, were just in favor of staying in a United Europe. Their votes were smeared in the general mass, but these figures became another reason to initiate a new referendum on independence. The ruling coalition – the Scottish National Party (SNP) and the Scottish Greens –, which emerged as a result of local elections, considered that their success, plus the Brexit figures, give them, as they say here, a "cast-iron mandate" to hold a new expression of will and have already called it "Indiref2". But this requires the consent of Westminster. The First Minister of Scotland, she is also the head of the SNP, Nicola Sergen, wrote a letter to the then Prime Minister Johnson. "Neither you nor I," it said, "will ever come to a common opinion on Scottish independence. But I expect that a Democrat will find it unacceptable that the people of Scotland are not given the right to choose, given that a clear majority wants this referendum." Johnson answered in his usual manner. They say the referendum took place, but you yourself said that such an opportunity is given once in a generation, so wait for, say, 40 years, and every 8-10 years we will not return to this issue. Liz Truss, who replaced him, confirmed this decision. The claims of the British government to the referendum are mainly reduced to the fact that it did not receive clear and clear concepts: how an independent Scotland is going to solve issues with the currency or, for example, the pension provision of citizens who have worked for the Crown all their lives, how health care and education will be built, the system of combating the pandemic. In addition, if there is a sudden desire – and it will arise – to return to the EU, then the English-Scottish border will be as "rigid" as possible, London warned. It is clear that it will not be possible to approach the referendum directly, without the permission of the British government, so Scotland filed a lawsuit with the Supreme Court of the country. It met on October 11 and 12 to decide whether Scotland could hold its "Indyref2" without government permission. On one side of the scales lay the argument that Holyrood (the castle in Edinburgh, which is considered the seat of the local parliament) nothing stops inviting the people to express their will, while the vote for independence will not be binding. On the other hand, if the Scots vote "yes" in the referendum, that is, Scotland will hypothetically be able to gain independence, it will mean that the unwritten constitution of Britain will need to be amended. It will turn out that the issues that have hitherto been in the exclusive competence of Westminster will have to be given up. Now the Scottish Parliament, created only in 1999, has no special leverage over Westminster. He has at his disposal only the "30th section" of the Scotland Act, which is built on the principle of "everything that is not prohibited is allowed". But Holyrood cannot interfere with the competence of the UK government. Throughout its existence, it has applied the "30th section" 16 times - when issues related to the construction of railways or the reduction of the voting age in local elections. Nicola Sergen said that if the Supreme Court does not allow a new referendum, the coalition government will go the other way. The "30th section" will be forgotten and they will go to the next UK general election in 2024 only under the slogan: "Should Scotland become an independent state"? Thus, the vote will become a "de facto referendum". Approximately in the Catalan style. A representative of Westminster before the hearing in the Supreme Court said: "It would be better for the Scottish and British governments to work on solving joint tasks, rather than be puzzled by the issues of a new referendum." That is, it is clear that the Scottish approach to the issue is not acceptable for London, at least for today. Not only are the contours of a possible future compromise unclear, but even the circumstances under which such a bargain will be possible at all. By the way, the British election expert Professor John Curtis, after analyzing a dozen recent polls, revealed that if you remove the abstainers, then 49 percent are for independence now, and 51 percent are against. The hearing is over and the court has retired for a meeting that may take several weeks. "It is unlikely," says Akash Paun of the analytical group of the government Institute of Public Administration, "that the court will satisfy the claim of the SNP, but those who want Scotland to remain part of the Kingdom should not consider this a final victory." So it's natural. After all, the referendum never ends.

France has enough weapons for five days

Note: this is a machine translation from the original Russian text The arsenals of the seventh army of the world are not designed for war. This was shown by NATO exercises and expert assessments. Five years ago, the French army ranked second in Europe after Russia. Military power was determined by the specialized American Internet portal Global Firepower, which, by the way, took as its slogan a quote from the British philosopher Bertrand Russell: "War does not determine who was right. And the one who lost it." The conclusions of American researchers suggest that even in the 30s France will be among the five world military powers. Now it is the seventh in the global top and is located between South Korea and the UK. The conflict in Ukraine has exposed amazing ulcers. "Yes, we do not supply so many weapons to the conflict zone. Just because we don't have enough ourselves. We cannot remain unarmed." This conclusion was reached by the head of the budget committee on defense of the French Parliament, Francois Cornu-Gentil. "The country has found itself with almost empty arsenals since the beginning of hostilities. What should we send there if we have nothing to supply our own army with?" It is difficult to understand what exactly and how much France is sending to Ukraine. Everything is open in the USA, but here all information on this issue is classified. Emmanuel Macaron announced that France had sent 18 Caesar artillery units with a range of up to 40 kilometers to Ukraine. And for small things – armor, helmets, medical preparations… And according to the calculations of the Secretary of the Defense Commission of the French Senate, Helene Conway-Mouret, the total price of the issue, including humanitarian aid, is 4 billion euros. The problem is that 18 Caesars are a quarter of all long–range guns in France. "Our country, of course, holds a high bar for equipping the land, air and naval forces," said Elie Tentelbaum, director of the Center for the Study of Strategic Issues at the French Institute of International Relations. – But we have been noting since the 90s that our defense power does not meet modern requirements at all. Since the end of the cold war, we have begun to disarm so actively that now we do not even have time to replenish our stocks. As our former Prime Minister Laurent Fabius used to say: "And now we are receiving dividends from the world." In 1991, we had 1,350 tanks. Now it is 220. From 700 aircraft, 250 remained. The defense budget during the Cold War was 4 percent of GDP, and already under Sarkozy it was less than 1 percent. And this is despite the fact that the strength of the French army has been reduced by a third, not four times." At the same time, parliamentarian Francois Cornu-Gentil believes: "France missed the stage when all countries started developing drones. For some reason, neither the Ministry of Defense nor industrialists were interested in this topic. Everyone thought it was some kind of toy, and drones changed the whole physiognomy of the modern battlefield." The former commander-in-chief of NATO forces, Jean-Paul Palameros, a Frenchman, by the way, has always insisted that the Europeans bring their defense budgets to at least 2 percent of their GDP. It didn't pass. Because no one seriously imagined the emergence of global conflicts. Regional – yes, as many as you want. But not to rearm the whole thing because of this. "Of course, we are modernizing our army," says Eli Tentelbaum, "we have replaced one nuclear submarine, the ground forces have received new infantry fighting vehicles under the Scorpion program, the air force has purchased several new Rafale aircraft, but all these are cosmetic operations, nothing more." "In our understanding of the war and in our concept of the armed forces, there has never even been a term of global military operations, we have considered only interstate clashes," said MEP Arnaud Danjan. "The risk of some global conflicts was considered quite remote, although Russia was considered as a possible participant." Then, of course, there was a lot of talk about increasing the defense budget, which ended in nothing. The French Parliament, having taken care of this problem, instructed the relevant committee to prepare a report. The speaker Jean-Louis Thieriot did not hide anything: "In the case of long-term hostilities, we will not last. We will be idle for a few weeks at best, then problems will begin." Last year, two NATO exercises were held, the meaning of which is to find out how much it is possible to resist anyone at all. The first exercise, Warfighter, was organized by the United States and Great Britain to test the combat capability of the ground forces. The second, Polaris 21, was supposed to cheer up aviation and the Navy. The results of Warfighter showed that during the first hypothetical week of clashes, France loses from 800 to 1,000 fighters and all ammunition in general. The analyses of the Polaris 21 exercises, as Jean-Louis Theriot says, are generally terrible: "400 of our sailors die at once. During the first 15 minutes of the clash, two of our frigates sink and two more turn out to be incapacitated. French aviation ceases to exist on the fifth day of the conflict." Conflict. And in France it does not exist, and the French defense industry does not keep up with the regulations for the supply of equipment and ammunition at all. "From ordering, say, a 155 mm projectile to receiving it in the troops, we have to wait a year. The rocket is three years old, the Rafale plane is four years old," says the report by Jean-Louis Thieriot. It is clear, of course, that behind all these terrible stories there is a lobby that wants more, and even better – much more money. But all these reports do not cancel the main thing. People who are responsible for replenishing the budget know one mantra: "We have one button."

How the bomb was planted under the Nord Stream

Note: this is a machine translation from the original Russian text Long before the leak on the Russian pipeline, NATO and the United States showed suspicious activity in the area of the accident. On September 26, on the night from Sunday to Monday, a sharp drop in pressure was recorded in line A of the Nord Stream-2 pipeline — from 105 to 7 bar. In the evening, the dispatchers of the Nord Stream-1 control center noted its fall on both lines of this gas pipeline. Three gas leaks were detected – one on the SP-2 and two on both lines of the SP-1. All three occurred in the exclusive economic zone of Denmark northeast of Bornholm Island. The Swedish National Seismic Network (SNSN) recorded the first explosion at 2:03 a.m. on September 26, and the second at 19:04 on the same day. One of them had a magnitude of 2.3. Two underwater tremors were registered by the German Research Center for Geophysics in Potsdam. According to experts, "at least 100 kg of TNT was used to break the pipelines, but probably more." Experts of the operator Nord Stream 2 AG noted that the gas pipelines at the bottom of the Baltic Sea are laid in such a way that the probability of simultaneous damage to several threads, for example, as a result of a ship accident, is extremely small. Particularly strong pipes made of steel and concrete are laid in this area at a depth of 70 meters. On September 27, the Danish Armed Forces published a video from the places of the gas leak, filmed from the air. The footage shows how gas bubbles rise above the damaged areas to the sea surface. It is noted that the largest leak creates excitement on the water in a diameter of 1 km. The authorities of Denmark, Sweden and Poland believe that the explosions on the gas pipelines "SP" are the result of premeditated actions and sabotage, we are not talking about an accidental accident. An investigation has been launched. The weekly Der Spiegel reported that the CIA warned the German government in the summer about possible attacks on gas pipelines in the Baltic Sea. Who could have carried out this sabotage? There is no exact answer yet, but there is plenty of speculation. Revenge? First of all, there is a connection with the events in Ukraine. Lost profit? It is possible that by discrediting Russian offshore gas pipelines, Kiev and Warsaw could try to raise their status as land transiters controlling the Bratstvo and Yamal gas pipelines. No wonder Polish President Andrzej Duda openly called for the dismantling of Nord Stream 2 a month ago. By the way, at the same time as the emergency in the Polish city of Golenyuv, the opening ceremony of the Baltic Pipe gas pipeline, through which energy carriers will flow from Norway to Poland, Denmark and neighboring countries, took place. It is planned to import up to 10 billion cubic meters of gas from Norway to Poland annually and transport 3 billion cubic meters from Poland to Denmark. The start of pumping is scheduled for October 1. Danish energy company Energinet claims that the pipeline will be able to operate at full capacity by the end of November. This is so, for the record. The Poles, by the way, put forward the most absurd version of what happened with the "joint venture". Panov said that the leaks could be a provocation on the part of Russia (!). "We are in a situation with high international tension. Unfortunately, our eastern neighbor is constantly pursuing an aggressive policy. If he is capable of an aggressive military policy in Ukraine, then it is obvious that no provocation can be ruled out, including in areas that are located in Western Europe," said Polish Deputy Foreign Minister Marcin Przydac. It seems that another Pole, former Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski, turned out to be closer to the truth than many. In one of the social networks, he posted a photo from the scene of the accident and accompanied it with the following entry: "Thank you, USA!". In confirmation, he cited the words of American President Joe Biden on February 7 of this year. He said that the United States would put an end to the Nord Stream-2 if Russian troops crossed the border of Ukraine. "Polish MEP, former Foreign Minister Radek Sikorski thanked the United States for today's accident on Russian gas pipelines. Is this an official statement about a terrorist attack?" the official representative of the Russian Foreign Ministry, Maria Zakharova, wrote in her telegram channel. Let me also draw your attention to one story that may well help to unravel what happened. Experts say that the charge could have been laid either by a diver or from a mini-submarine. But when? A few days ago or earlier? So, two years ago, the BALTOPS 2020 naval exercises were held here. Judging by the data of the AIS Automatic Identification System, eight NATO minesweepers cruised tirelessly in the Danish exclusive economic zone off Bornholm Island for a whole day (from June 9 to June 10, 2020). Especially carefully – for about two hours – they circled around a well-known location on the Baltic bottom of ammunition from the Second World War. The NATO grouping consisted of the following warships: the British HMS Ramsey, the Lithuanian M53, the Dutch URK and Zuerikzee, the Finnish Purunpaa 41 and the German M1064, Seehund 07 and Seehund 18. The main part of the operation, as it turned out, took place along the route of the 160-kilometer unfinished section of the Nord Stream-2 in Danish waters. The BALTOPS 2020 maneuvers led by the United States (the time of the event is June 7-16, 2020) involved 29 ships, 29 aircraft and helicopters, as well as 3,000 military personnel from 17 alliance countries (Canada, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the United States) and two partner countries (Finland and Sweden). Now these countries also have one foot in the alliance. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, military games were held exclusively at sea, land operations were not envisaged. And one more significant fresh detail: according to the data collected using the services Flightradar24 and ads-b.nl , it became known that American helicopters The Sikorsky SH-60 / MH-60 Seahawk under the call sign FFAB123 flew over the specified area in early and mid-September. Their trace was found right above the accident points. What did they forget there? However, this is only information for reflection. Experts will draw conclusions.

Is the European Commission planning a coup in Hungary?

Note: this is a machine translation from the original Russian text Ursula von der Leyen's attempt to so brazenly and openly "crush the objectionable Orban" is the first such case in the history of united Europe. The European Commission (EC) deliberately seeks to deprive Hungary of funds from the European budget, intending thus to achieve the resignation of Prime Minister Viktor Orban and his government, which is objectionable to Brussels. That is, in other words: the head of this structure (not elected, but appointed!) Frau Ursula von der Leyen and her subordinate officials set out to overthrow the legitimate Hungarian government, using blackmail in order to destabilize the situation in the EU country and raise the Magyars to protest. It is noteworthy that this version was voiced not by anyone, but by the deputy head of the Polish Foreign Ministry, Piotr Wawrzyk. He also expressed the opinion of the official Warsaw that by its actions the EC is losing the authority of the body designed to carry out managerial and administrative functions in the European Union, turning into a purely political structure. "Hungary should be such a negative example of what the conflict with the EC leads to. Poland cannot support this type of decision," the diplomat concluded. Why would the Panovs, who are at different poles with the Magyars (for example, in relation to Russia), begin to show such concern for Budapest? This topic is, in fact, very entertaining, demonstrating, in particular, how the united Europe is bursting at the seams. But let's take it in order. The EC called on the EU Council to introduce a conditionality mechanism in the budget in the European Union in relation to Hungary. This means blocking the allocation of about 7.5 billion euros to this country. European officials believe that Hungarians do not comply with the standards of the association regarding the rule of law and anti-corruption measures. They especially do not like the fact that a year ago Budapest legally banned the propaganda of information about sodomy and "sex change" in educational materials and television programs intended for under-18s. It should be understood that for Budapest, the money in question is very solid, especially in the conditions of the energy crisis rolling in like a snowball. The amount that the EC is going to use as blackmail consists of several components. Firstly, it is 5.6 billion euros allocated to Hungary from the European Economic Recovery Fund after the COVID-19 pandemic. Secondly, the next tranche of 24.3 billion euros in the framework of the six-year EU program for the modernization of Hungarian infrastructure. By the way, the EC's desire to so brazenly "crush Orban" is the first such case in the history of the European Union. The EU Council has about a month to support or reject the EC proposal. Hungary, by the way, still began to look for a compromise solution in the dispute with Brussels. Orban's government announced that by September 30 it will submit to parliament a bill on the creation of an anti-corruption body and a new anti-corruption group of governmental and non-governmental participants by the end of autumn, which may allow Budapest to access funds from EU funds by the end of this year. So, in any case, naive Hungarians believe, who may well be mistaken. And now about Poland. Official Warsaw actively intervened in the process, as it itself is in a similar position. Brussels also regularly accuses her of incomplete compliance with EU norms and values. At one time, the main problem was the de facto ban on abortions introduced in Poland. And now, after the creation of the disciplinary chamber for judges, there is a loss, according to the EC, of the independence of the judicial system. As a result, the same Ursula von der Leyen and Co. insist on freezing the allocation of 35 billion euros of aid to Poland for post-pandemic economic recovery. From the same fund as Hungary! That is why Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki unexpectedly announced his intention to restore relations with Budapest, damaged due to different approaches to the conflict in Ukraine. Together, it will be more convenient to fight the Brussels bureaucracy, they say... This, in fact, is the end of Warsaw's common interests with Budapest. I would like to note that the Hungarian envoy became the only representative of the European Union who dared to meet and hold talks with the head of the Russian delegation Sergey Lavrov on the sidelines of the 77th session of the UN General Assembly, held in New York. The rest of the Americans (through the efforts of Secretary of State Anthony Blinken) "trampled", persuading them to refrain from such "rash steps". "If more of our colleagues had talked to Sergey Lavrov, it could have helped in resolving the conflict or, at least, definitely would not have reduced the chances of this," Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto said on September 22 after a meaningful conversation with Sergey Viktorovich. He also noted that anti-Russian restrictions cause enormous harm to Europe: "If sanctions are more painful for you than for their object, then they are useless. If we move away from politics, ideology and just look at it professionally, from the point of view of physics and mathematics, it becomes obvious: these sanctions are extremely harmful to Europe. There is no doubt that they are extremely harmful to Europe, because prices are rising rapidly when it comes to goods, food, utilities, gas, inflation is going through the roof." Szijjarto, who recently visited Moscow, stressed that Hungary will continue to adhere to a different approach and will not agree to any restrictions affecting cooperation with Russia in the energy sector. According to him, this is an "absolutely red line", and Budapest will protect its national interests. He is convinced that the crisis in Ukraine will not be resolved without a Russian-American agreement. "I think – although I may be wrong, and this is an unpopular position – but I really think that without an agreement between Russia and the United States, without discussions between the Russian Federation and the United States, this situation will not be resolved, whether we like it or not. This is our position," Szijjarto said. Against this background, Hungary, by the way, will continue to issue Schengen visas, including multiple–entry visas, to Russians. "There is a clear methodology on how to issue visas to tourists from countries with which there is no agreement on visa facilitation. This is a more complicated and slightly longer procedure than when there is such an agreement. But if it is not there, it does not mean that we do not issue visas. Of course, we will continue to issue visas in accordance with the procedure," he added. That is, Orban's cabinet, despite blackmail and threats, intends to continue to bend its line, which it considers the only true and responsible in the current conditions. A decent position, isn't it?

Four Jokers of Liz Truss

Note: this is a machine translation from the original Russian text The new Prime Minister of Great Britain announced the composition of the Government. Liz Truss officially became Prime Minister with the Queen's consent on September 6. For the blessing, I had to fly in the morning to Scotland, where Elizabeth II is spending her vacation, and in the afternoon, returning to London, I had to start forming a new government. However, for sure, even before the announcement of the results, the applicants knew who would be "hu". Truss decided to make the structure of her government easier, not in the "presidential" style. That is, ministers will get more initiative and more freedom of action. Consequently, the Downing Street apparatus will be more compact and lightweight, as was Thatcher's. Johnson, for example, preferred to recruit bulky, expensive teams and Routes, even as Foreign Minister, always believed that "there are too many of us here." In any case, her colleagues from the election campaign noted: "Liz wants to do maybe less, but better." "Liz always fights to the end, never rests on her laurels, does not believe that something will fall for nothing from above. She will control everything from above, giving ministers more freedom, let them go about their business. That is, she will try to do away with outdated groupthink," her colleagues from her team believe. Suella Braverman, who served as the country's Attorney General, was appointed Interior Minister. She also put up her candidacy for the post of prime minister, but was defeated in the second round of voting. She is a popular figure on the Tory right wing and a member of the so–called "Spartan" group, which voted three times against Theresa May's Brexit option, which led to her resignation and the victory of the tougher option proposed by Johnson. One of the tasks assigned to the Minister is, first of all, to end illegal migration from across the English Channel. It should be recalled here that Britain has accepted and is trying to implement the idea of sending all migrants to Rwanda before their case is considered, and they agree there. This hard line was invented by Braverman's predecessor as minister, and Truss hopes that Britain will not turn away from it, despite vigorous opposition. Braverman took a tough position on the issue of teaching schoolchildren the theory of the possibility of gender reassignment, saying that in junior and middle grades it is generally unacceptable, and what to tell the elders – it should be decided by the Ministry of Education. During the referendum on leaving the EU, Truss voted "against". And then she not only defected to the camp of the Brexiteers, but also advocated the abolition of the Protocol on Northern Ireland. It assumed an accelerated procedure for customs inspection of goods between the EU, which includes the Republic of Ireland, and Northerners entering the United Kingdom. Now Northern Irish customs officers will be able to determine for themselves whether to apply British duties or not. Here the Prime Minister and the new Interior Minister have complete unanimity. James Cleverley has been appointed Minister of Foreign Affairs. He worked at the Foreign Ministry for two years with Truss, until Johnson transferred him to the Ministry of Education. For the last few months, before the almost universal resignation of ministers, he worked as Minister for European Affairs and his competence included issues of Ukraine. Therefore, Truss felt that this experience would be more useful in the near future than ever. But not only for this. Cleverley led the Conservative Party itself for a while. And Truss expects that her colleague will help her prepare for the general elections, which will be held in early 2025. This is a serious task, since Truss won the party elections, relying on the right wing of the right. And universal is a completely different matter. All Britons will choose there and the Labour Party will have to resist, not just their party colleagues. Quasi Kvarteng went for a promotion. He became the Minister of Finance, and in the Ministry of Finance he worked as a business secretary. Here, for the first time in many years, there is a complete coincidence of ideas between the Prime Minister and the Chancellor of the Treasury. He is a convinced marketeer. Just like Truss, he is skeptical about the idea of imposing unexpected fees on energy firms instead of hard ones, and also believes that tax cuts for everyone will stimulate the economy and, as a result, increase living standards. The defense will be led by Ben Wallace. Actually, he remains at his post. He is very popular in the party, even to the point that he was considered the favorite in the fight for the prime minister's seat. But almost immediately he refused this mission. In principle, if the need arises, he can also be appointed deputy Truss, since Wallace is one of the most powerful ministers in the cabinet. He is known for taking a very tough anti-Russian position, as, indeed, Liz Truss. Both before and after February 24, Wallace pushed the idea of arming Ukraine, and even together with Truss, they had a conflict with the then Finance Minister Sunak. They asked to increase defense spending by 3 percent. During Truss' first speech as prime minister, rain poured down. Unexpected for London. But she was not at a loss: "Britain will withstand any storm. It will build, work and grow."

End tourism from Russia

Note: this is a machine translation from the original Russian text About European Union freezing the simplified visa regime for citizens of the Russian Federation. If today the founding fathers of Marxism, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, had the opportunity to write a new "Manifesto of the Communist Party", then they, being objective researchers, would probably have had to start their work not with a phrase about the ghost of communism wandering around Europe, but with a statement that the ghost of Russophobia is wandering around modern Europe. Moreover, we can say that right before our eyes, a negative attitude towards everything Russian – from gas and oil to culture and tourism – is being cemented as a new mandatory ideology of the countries of the so-called "collective West". After the economic sanctions did not work, European politicians zealously set about destroying other sites of European-Russian cooperation, among which, of course, was tourism. The shooters, as expected, were two small but very independent Baltic republics – Latvia and Estonia, which for many years received considerable income from Russian tourists in their small budgets. Already on August 9, Estonian Prime Minister Kaya Kallas hacked from the shoulder. "Stop issuing tourist visas to Russians," the stern Estonian woman said. – It's time to end tourism from Russia!".  In support of her deep thought, she put forward the thesis that a simple tourist trip to Europe is "a privilege, not one of human rights."  Less than four days before, Latvia had made its shot. "Due to the international situation, the Embassy of the Republic of Latvia in the Russian Federation has suspended the acceptance of visa applications for citizens of the Russian Federation for an indefinite period," the Embassy of Latvia warned Russians on its website. Further, the more respectable players of the European tourist market rushed into the round dance of Russophobic dances – the Czech Republic, Finland and Greece, which joined them, until recently was one of the main beneficiaries of the arrival of guests from Russia, which in record 2013 there were 1.3 million, and in the "doc-shaped" 2019 – 800 thousand. The "hot Finnish guys" working in the Suomi Foreign Ministry decided not to cut the branches, but simply to file them thoroughly, reducing the number of tourist visas issued to Russians by 10 times from September 1 (!). As for the Czech Republic, its plans were announced in early August by the mouth of Foreign Minister Jan Lipavsky. "There can be no question of ordinary tourism for Russians," while a special military operation of the Russian Federation is taking place in Ukraine, the diplomat said. The Minister proudly recalled that just two days after the start of the SVO, the Czech Republic suspended the issuance of visas to Russian citizens, followed by a similar ban for citizens of Belarus. It is difficult to explain the barriers on the way to the Czech Republic for Russians with rational arguments characteristic of mentally healthy people: after all, up to 400 thousand Russian tourists visited Prague alone every year before the pandemic (2012 was a record with a result of 492 thousand Russians), each of whom spent on average about 2 thousand crowns (about $ 100) daily, leaving an additional 7 thousand crowns in fashion stores. Before our eyes, the once powerful flow of Russian tourists coming to Bulgaria is drying up. It is expected that there will be only about 50 thousand flights via Istanbul, Belgrade and Dubai this year. For comparison: in the last "pre-family" year, there were 550 thousand fans of Bulgarian hospitality from the Russian Federation, and in Soviet times up to 1 million Soviet people came to the beaches of people's Bulgaria annually.  The positions of Denmark and the Netherlands, traditionally unfriendly to the Russian Federation, on the issue of Russian tourism surprised few people. "We will advocate for the termination of the issuance of tourist visas to Russians," Dutch Foreign Minister Vopke Hoekstra said. There was nothing particularly surprising here – after all, both of these states will not suffer big losses from the absence of Russian tourists. In the "docked" 2019, Russians received only 3,607 Danish visas, and in the Netherlands the number of guests from Russia slightly exceeded 1% of the total number of foreign tourists... Appetite, according to a well-known saying, comes during a meal. Having isolated themselves from the flow of Russian tourists unworthy of the "privilege" of enjoying their stay in highly cultured Estonia, Latvia, Finland, Poland and others like them, the leaders of these states went further – they began to demand a complete ban on issuing Schengen visas to Russians in other EU countries. Dmitry Peskov, the press Secretary of the President of the Russian Federation, called these attempts "an absolute lack of reason." "Step by step, both Brussels and individual European capitals demonstrate an absolute lack of reason," he said. "This set of irrationality, bordering on insanity, unfortunately allows for the possibility that such solutions can be discussed." Unfortunately, the discussion of the ideas of cardinal restrictions on Russian tourism to the countries of the "collective West" did not end there – at an informal meeting of the EU Council in Prague on August 30-31, the foreign ministers of the 27 EU countries made a joint decision to completely freeze the visa facilitation agreement with Russia. This decision, in fact, was a compromise that allowed at least somehow to mask the "visa" split in the European Union that was planned at the Prague meeting - after all, France, Germany, Portugal and Austria opposed the "hot" Baltic and Polish guys. Chancellor Olaf Scholz admitted that he could "hardly" imagine a complete cessation of the issuance of Schengen visas to Russians, and the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Josep Borrel, openly stated that he did not support the proposal for a complete visa ban. The influential British newspaper Financial Times pointed out that at the meeting in Prague it was possible to promote "reasonable ways of using visa issuance as a lever" and avoid "radical restrictions".  "We should not throw out the baby along with the water, a complete ban on issuing visas to Russian citizens would completely cut off the last contacts with Russian civil society," Austrian Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg commented on the Prague decisions. In his opinion, stopping the issuance of visas to Russians would be "a counterproductive step in the fight against the Russian propaganda machine." After all, if the EU completely closed entry to Europe for Russian citizens, it would play into the hands of the Kremlin, not Brussels. So, the situation is paradoxical. Visas to Europe, on the one hand, will be, but on the other hand – not. In addition to the increased cost of Schengen from 35 to 80 euros (which is unlikely to stop Russians wishing to visit Europe), the deadlines for processing visa applications are being lengthened and a so-called individual approach is being introduced, when visas will not be issued to all applicants, but only to "specific groups of Russians", the main among which will be dissidents signing when crossing the border a document condemning the conduct of a special military operation by the Russian Federation in Ukraine. In Prague, the EU ministers additionally agreed that in the issue of issuing or not issuing visas to Russians, each EU state now gets the right to individually establish a pass regime at its borders, that is, in fact, it gets the opportunity to cancel valid Schengen visas issued in other EU states. Even before the adoption at the Prague meeting by EU ministers of decisions to freeze (and in fact to cancel) the simplified visa regime with the Russian Federation, Deputy Chairman of the Security Council of the Russian Federation Dmitry Medvedev, who noted that the leaders of the European Union "got their Russophobic clucking," suggested that the real steps taken in Prague will show how Europe treats Russians. "The Europeans will once again show their true face and distract Russia and its citizens from conducting a special military operation with lies and delusional promises," Medvedev added. So the closure by Brussels of the window to Europe cut by Peter the Great for Russia will most likely have a positive value. As for the background of the decision to tighten the visa regime for Russians, the idea suggests itself that the current European leaders subconsciously want to isolate the inhabitants of Europe choking in insane gender reforms from Russians – carriers of traditional morality and normal ethical values, and the special military operation of the Russian Federation in Ukraine is clearly playing second fiddle here.