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September 29, 2022 5:11 pm

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Selected Articles Review

Alastair Campbell’s Diary: Liz Truss is bringing about her own downfall


So the power in the land has moved from Winchester boy Dishy Rishi Sunak to Old Etonian KamiKwasi Kwarteng. And as Sunak leaves the frontbench frontline to spend more time with his millions, Kwarteng delivers a mega-mini-budget so brazenly designed for the pound-shorting hedge-funders and the Tory Party donor-sphere it makes you wonder whether Liz Truss is a very high-profile undercover agent for the BBB campaign.

That’s BBB as in Bring Back Boris, whose founder and campaign director, Boris Johnson, is currently getting his mates to call round Red Wall MPs asking whether they miss having someone who at least pretended to be there for the many, not the few, and talked the talk about levelling up. This new version of the 12-year-old Tory virus doesn’t even bother with the pretence. As the Institute for Fiscal Studies pointed out – in the absence of any factual, non-gaslighting government assessment – earn less than £155,000 a year, and you’re worse off. Earn more and you’re way better off, with poorer people helping you out.

As Truss sat watching the backside of the close friend and now economic bedfellow she appointed as chancellor, as he stood erect at the Dispatch Box tossing out goodies to his old school pals, the message could not have been clearer – oh, she does love to be “very clear about this”: “We’re a bunch of smug, cruel, arrogant, know-it-all ideologues who wrote a book a while back about slashing taxes for the rich, shredding regulations for the corporates and smashing rights for idle British workers, called Britannia Unchained, and we have gone from being remaindered to becoming Masters of the Universe, so fuck the lot of you, we’re giving it a go. And if it all goes tits up, the pound-shorters will look after us, so it’s win-win even if we lose to Labour.”

One despairing northern Tory even suggested to me that the only logic he could see in KamiKwasi’s strategy was that it was aimed less at winning an election than winning riches for the mates of the Masters of the Universe, and letting Labour in with an economic landscape so reduced to rubble they would never be able to sort it in time for the election after next.

I’m not sure I buy that. I have the feeling Truss believes this can be a winning strategy. The Thatcher trickle-down tribute band act won her the leadership election, and she reckons it can win her a general election, too. Policy “shock and awe” was necessary to try to get away for the third time in six years with the con that a new PM means a new government, and that despite being a minister with Cameron, May and Johnson, the failings of a wasted decade have nothing to do with her. This is made easier by those media outlets propagandising for her as readily as they did for her predecessors. “At last a true Tory budget” rejoiced Lord Dacre of Pyongyang’s Daily Mail, without reference to the fawning headlines over those of KamiKwasi’s predecessors.

As for the Express, how many Tory PMs do we have to have before their readers realise the paper is literally churning out cut-and-paste bullshit for all of them, on their amazing abilities to deliver on endlessly repeated promises to get the economy roaring, show the world what a success Brexit is, fix the NHS, fix social care, and all the other stuff they have all spectacularly failed to do?

Far more important than anything the papers said, mind you, were the strong statements by the RSPB and the National Trust against what they see as the massive threat to wildlife posed by 38 new low-regulation “investment zones”. If I were Lizzie Twarteng, I would not fancy taking on a radicalised RSPB. I joined today.

Two huge stories last week that barely figured on most of the media’s radar yet which, had they happened under Labour, would have sent the press into meltdown.

First, the shorting of the pound I mentioned above. When George Soros made millions betting against sterling ahead of Black Wednesday 30 years ago, he was making a judgment based on hard-headed economic and political analysis. Last week’s mega-mini-budget pound-shorters seem to have had access to decision-makers and decisions ahead of time. Sounds like insider trading to me. If it had been under Labour, I’m sure Yates of the Yard would have been all over it.

The second story concerns Mark Fullbrook, Truss’s chief of staff, whose salary is being paid not by the government but by his lobbying company. This is the same Fullbrook who had been quizzed by the FBI about his role in an overseas political funding scandal, another real news story that sank without trace.

“It is not unusual for a special adviser or civil servant to join government on secondment,” said No 10 in defence of the Fullbrook arrangement. Come again? We are not talking about someone helping manage a new IT system at the Department of Paperclips. We are talking about the chief of staff to the prime minister.

There were questions raised about whether this bizarre arrangement was so Fullbrook could avoid paying tax, which, given the nature of this government, would not be a surprise. Tax, like the law, is for the little people. But it misses the point. The arrangement represents a clear conflict of interest. I hate that old phrase “it wouldn’t have happened in my day,” but, well, it wouldn’t, and if it had, my God you would have heard of it by now. Lord Dacre of Pyongyang would have gone full Starmerbeergate mode by now.

I hope some of you caught, and enjoyed, the first episode of Make Me Prime Minister on Tuesday, the new Channel 4 series in which Tory peer Sayeeda Warsi and I are on the hunt for an alternative PM. Twelve contestants – 11 now that we have had the first elimination after the battle to find a good education policy – are competing to show they have what it takes.

Sunday Times journalist Tim Shipman, one of the media figures occasionally putting our candidates through their paces, accurately pointed out that there was a greater rigour to our process than the one that saw the Tories choose between Truss and Sunak (neither of whom would have made our final!).

I was also thrilled to see him write that he felt confident, having seen some of the episodes, that as well as being good telly, the series should be good for politics, too. Let’s hope so. My God, we need new blood, and if you stick with the series, I think you will see that several of the candidates are easily as good as some of the politicians we regularly see on the news.

It was great fun working with Sayeeda Warsi, who may be a Tory, but she is northern, warm, loves a good laugh, and loathes what her party has become and is doing to the country almost as much as I do. She also has a very good habit of saying what she thinks. So when we were interviewed by the Times magazine, I loved that she wasn’t buying into the idea that Liz Truss putting people of colour into top jobs in government somehow gave her or the government a free pass on racism. Sayeeda, remember, was at the forefront of the campaign to get her party to take Islamophobia seriously.

“Just because somebody is female or black or brown, if they’ve got nasty ideas, they’re still nasty people,” she said. I heard enough over the weeks we spent filming together to know who she meant. Clue? We saw a lot of them during the leadership election, and are seeing plenty of them on the front bench now.

Selected Articles Review

Грани.Ру: Кнопка невозврата


105467 Через несколько дней диктатор нацистской России объявит об аннексии четырех областей Украины. Отменить уже анонсированное им публично решение он не может. И дело не в том, что подобное отступление с заявленных позиций может обрушить политическую конструкцию путинской диктатуры. Очень похоже, что российское общество готово покорно смириться с любыми зигзагами власти. Но куда больше, чем “внутренних угроз”, кремлевская крыса боится выказать слабость перед внешними противниками. Минимальной ближайшей целью нацистского режима Путина является выход российско-фашистских захватчиков на административные границы аннексируемых областей и принуждение Украины к публичному отказу от вооруженной борьбы за эти территории. Это и означает приемлемое для Кремля временное “замораживание конфликта”. Неспособность достичь этой цели будет однозначно воспринята и внутри, и вне России как демонстрация все той же слабости. Конвенциональных военных сил для достижения этой цели у Кремля нет. Даже для того чтобы остановить хотя и замедлившееся, но все же продолжающееся контрнаступление Украины. Все подготовленное и боеспособное, что можно было выскрести из России, не оголяя полностью критически важную военную инфраструктуру, уже брошено на украинский фронт и в значительной своей части выбито. Быстрая переброска на фронт больших масс мобилизованного пушечного мяса также невозможна. Она будет постепенной. Однако наращивание российских военных ресурсов на фронте будет вызывать пропорциональное наращивание западной военной помощи Украине. Пойдя на очередной виток эскалации, Путин взвинтил для своих противников цену не столько сопротивления, сколько уступок. Замораживание фактической линии фронта с последующими бесконечными переговорами о “спорных территориях” устроило бы многих на Западе. Но путь к этому отрезает сам Путин, объявляя об официальной и окончательной аннексии. Переговоры о “спорных территориях” становятся невозможны в первую очередь для Кремля. С другой стороны, лидеры Запада тоже уже просто не могут себе позволить ограничиться словесным непризнанием аннексии. Сколько-нибудь длительное удержание Кремлем контроля даже над частью территории, об аннексии которой он объявит, превращает аннексию из единичного прецедента в повседневную норму современной международной реальности. А это, в свою очередь, превращает всю систему международных институтов, союзов и договоров в потерявший кредитное доверие и лопнувший банк. Никто после этого не сможет сдержать нарастающую волну международного насилия в самых разных частях планеты. Путин просто не оставил лидерам Запада иного выхода, кроме как защищаться в попытке не допустить этого. И единственным средством, с помощью которого он может хоть как-то надеяться принудить их к капитуляции (в частности – к отказу от военной помощи Украине), является ядерный шантаж. В своей экзистенциальной борьбе за новый мировой порядок, основанный на произволе хищника, Путин рано или поздно должен будет выдвинуть свой ядерный ультиматум. Не столько Украине, сколько лидерам Запада. И рано или поздно он должен будет подкрепить словесные угрозы демонстрацией решимости ядерное оружие реально использовать. Никто не знает, сработает ли “защита от дурака” российского ядерного арсенала. Но опасность того, что она не сработает, существует и достаточно велика. Существует мнение, что Путин не применит ядерное оружие до того, как он израсходует мобилизуемое им пушечное мясо. Однако консервация на сколько-нибудь длительный период сложившегося на сегодня положения на фронте после официального оформления аннексии не только неприемлема для Запада, но и крайне унизительна для Кремля. Как это так – мы уже объявили эту территорию своей, а ничего не меняется Одна из важных особенностей тоталитарного, нацистского режима Путина – огромная роль понтов в системе поддержания власти.

Весьма вероятно, что ядерный ультиматум будет выдвинут уже через несколько дней – сразу после того, как марионеточный российский “парламент” проштампует аннексию. И если западные разведки получат достоверные сведения о неизбежности российской ядерной атаки в ближайшее время, это может поставить западных лидеров перед необходимостью нанесения упреждающего обезоруживающего удара.

Selected Articles Review

В Минобороны перечислили задачи мобилизованных граждан РФ

После слаживания они приступят к контролю и обороне освобожденных территорий.

The post В Минобороны перечислили задачи мобилизованных граждан РФ first appeared on The Brooklyn Guide.

Selected Articles Review

As AG, Cortez Masto Left Thousands of Rape Kits Untested. Laxalt Helped Clear the Backlog—And Arrests Followed. – Washington Free Beacon

As AG, Cortez Masto Left Thousands of Rape Kits Untested. Laxalt Helped Clear the Backlog—And Arrests Followed.  Washington Free Beacon

The post As AG, Cortez Masto Left Thousands of Rape Kits Untested. Laxalt Helped Clear the Backlog—And Arrests Followed. – Washington Free Beacon first appeared on The Brooklyn Guide.

Selected Articles Review

Елизавета II скончалась по естественным причинам

Она умерла 8 сентября в 15:10 по местному времени.

The post Елизавета II скончалась по естественным причинам first appeared on The Brooklyn Guide.

Selected Articles Review

В ДНР появился билборд с Байденом и подписью «Спасибо деду Zа нашу победу»

На плакате также отмечено количество граждан ДНР, которые приняли участие в референдуме.

The post В ДНР появился билборд с Байденом и подписью «Спасибо деду Zа нашу победу» first appeared on The Brooklyn Guide.

Selected Articles Review

Jan. 6 panel delays hearing as Hurricane Ian aims at Florida – NBC12

6 attack on the U.S. Capitol announced Tuesday that it had postponed a hearing scheduled for Wednesday as a hurricane hurtled toward the Florida coast …

Selected Articles Review

Ukraine Situation Report: Another 18 HIMARS Launchers For Ukraine – The War Zone

Ukraine Situation Report: Another 18 HIMARS Launchers For Ukraine  The War Zone

Selected Articles Review

Trump tells Biden to be ‘smart’ and offers to ‘head up’ Nord Stream pipeline crisis talks – Express

Trump tells Biden to be ‘smart’ and offers to ‘head up’ Nord Stream pipeline crisis talks  Express

Selected Articles Review

Grief for Vladimir Putin’s deputy defence minister as nephew is killed in war


Paratrooper commander Captain Adam Khamkhoyev has become the first relative of a senior Vladimir Putin official to die during invasion of Ukraine

Ukraine: Funeral of injured Russian Captain Adam Khamkhoyev

The nephew of Russia’s hardline deputy defence minister has been killed by Ukrainian forces in the war.

Captain Adam Khamkhoyev, 30, a paratrooper commander, was killed on Friday night in Ukraine and later buried in the southern Russian province of Ingushetia.

His uncle is Colonel-General Yunus-Bek Yevkurov, Russia’s hardline deputy defence minister is a pro- war figure in Russian President Vladimir Putin ’s Government.

Captain Khamkhoyev’s death marks the first time a senior official of Putin has suffered the loss of a close relative in his war in Ukraine.

Colonel Yevkurov flew to Karabulak to attend his nephew’s funeral.

Baza news outlet reported that he “shared his condolences, spoke to the elderlies and the religious part of the community, and then flew back to Moscow.”

Yunus-Bek Yevkurov

Khamkhoyev was a graduate of the elite Ryazan Airborne Forces school and a commander of a Russian airborne assault squadron.

His uncle, Yevkurov, was a decorated paratrooper who once won the Hero of Russia honour, the country’s highest award.

No details have been released from either Russia or Ukraine on the details of his death.

Captain Adam Khamkhoyev
social media/e2w)

The news comes as Russian soldier Sergeant Vadim Shishimarin, 21, was given a life sentence after being convicted of killing a 62-year-old civilian in the first war crimes trial since the invasion of Ukraine.

Putin has faced continued losses with the British Ministry of Defence saying that in three months of the war in Ukraine, Russia is likely to have suffered casualty numbers similar to those experienced by the Soviet Union during a nine-year conflict in Afghanistan.

Yevkurov is a former governor and now one of the deputies of close Putin ally Sergei Shoigu, the Russian defence minister.

He was the subject of an assassination bid in 2009.

Yunus-Bek Yevkurov, then Head of Ingushetia, meets president Vladimir Putin in 2015
social media/e2w)

In March in a harrowing clip, he was seen visiting a bed-bound soldier in hospital.

The serviceman had lost a leg and looked wide-eyed and scared as Yevkurov told him: “ I hope you’ll get back on your feet.”

A report in the New York Times states that the United States has provided intelligence about Russian units that have allowed Ukrainians to target and kill Putin’s generals, with the attrition rate now standing at around one colonel every two days.

Funeral of Captain Adam Khamkhoyev, killed in Ukraine
social media/e2w)

Pentagon spokesperson, John Kirby, said the US was providing “Ukraine with information and intelligence that they can use to defend themselves”.

But Adrienne Watson, a national security council spokesperson, said intelligence was not provided “with the intent to kill Russian generals”.

Ukrainian officials said they have killed around 12 generals on the front lines.