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Caspian Sea

Video: Russia and Iran close the gap and stand together - Putin & Rouhani historic meeting

This article was republished on the Syrian Free Press on 4 Nov 2017.

[UPDATE 7 Nov 2017: Added excerpts from President Rouhani's speech.] I was riveted by this video in its presentation of the antithesis of United States policy in new agreements between Russia and Iran. The video begins with a remarkable political message in the ceremonial exchange of documents of agreement on very important material matters, which should make a big difference to politics in the region - and won't please the United States. These included agreements on nuclear energy transport cooperation, oil and gas exploration, technology and information technology, railway electrification, urban construction and development, trade in the energy industry, visa-free travel for groups between Russia and Iran, and agreement on extradition of convicted persons between the two countries and cooperation on legal affairs. In addition they agreed on mutual cooperation in fighting Islamic extremism, the encouragement of cultural exchange and sports, and working on the Convention on the Legal Status of the Caspian Sea. This news conference was part of a trilateral meeting of Vladimir Putin, President of Iran Hassan Rouhani and President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev. Putin and Rouhani appear in the video. You have to be aware of the momentous nature of the agreements in order to appreciate this otherwise somewhat stilted piece of diplomatic theatre. America has been trying to isolate and weaken Iran, which has both considerable oil reserves and a catbird seat on the shores of the oil-rich (if logistically highly problematic) Caspian Sea. America has backed wars in the region, invaded neighbours, and tried to undermine support for Russia in the Middle East because it wants permanent influence there. Obama, in his negotiations about Iran's use of nuclear power, may have been trying to keep some communications open, but Mr Trump has breached all democracy by openly threatening Iran. Iran (now that Syria has been crippled) is the leading technological and socially progressive power in the region, bitterly resented by Saudi Arabia and Israel. Now, apparently ironically, but actually quite naturally, Russia has resealed and expanded its friendship with Iran. In so doing, it has made Iran much more secure. How will the United States, NATO and the EU respond to this?

Why are we war-mongering in Ukraine and nearby?

"The geology of the region itself as well as its position as a geographical gateway to the Middle East, explains wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria, confusing dialogues with Iran and, now, moves on Ukraine. I really wonder if Australian politicians actually realise what they are backing in the region." Sheila Newman (Evolutionary sociologist specialised in oil geopolitics.) 1 This article summarises the initial Western misrepresentations and informs or reminds the historically educated reader of the history of this ancient petroleum-bearing region.

Who is in charge in Ukraine today?

We republish from VoltaireNet.org an article which gives the non-Anglophone sourced version of what has been happening in the Ukraine. There are, according to Global Research 6 ultra-right members of a neo-nazi party in the current government, whose Acting Prime Minister, Arseniy Yatsenyuk, was welcomed by Obama on March 12, 2014. Hostility towards their treatment by Russians during the Second World War and the then perception of the German Nazis as a rescue force, underlies some of the anti-semitism and fascist sympathies of Ukraine today. We should not overlook, however, the real energy behind events in this regions, which is the battle between alignments with superpowers, Russia, US, EU, and China, for the difficult to access but tantilising oil and gas reserves in the Caspian Sea, and the power to decide who dominates the countries the pipelines go through and to what destinations future pipelines will go. (Editorial comment by Candobetter.net: Article follows.)

Politics of international aid and Syria

Has capitalism, corporatisation and globalisation corrupted big international aid organisations. Is there some way we can boost the grass-roots activists and reinforce whatever is still working within troubled countries like Syria. And what are we doing there, anyway? AMRIS interview inside.

What's in it for Russia? Georgia, Ossetia, & Caspian oil and gas

One impact of Georgia's nose-thumbing Russia has been for the US and Europe to take a step backwards, away from it. This leaves Georgia, not only vulnerable to a Russian take-over, but it also frees Georgia to succumb to Russia.

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