Thursday 30th of June 2022

neutered neutrality by the US empire…….

As is well known, the Swiss Federal Council decided on 28 February to adopt all EU sanctions against Russia – not voluntarily, according to those familiar with the geopolitical situation, but in any case with more zeal than demanded in Washington and Brussels, because it also wants to please the EU and NATO turbos at home.1 Since then, the Federal Council has been constantly adapting its decrees – each time with the phrase that this does not harm Swiss neutrality(!).2 Before Easter, the Federal Council adopted the fifth package of sanctions, not without a rather casual commentary on the situation in general and the Russian “war guilt” in particular.

The Russian government is right to protest against Switzerland’s abandonment of neutrality and against the ahistorical and anti-neutrality statements of our government (see box). Fortunately, however, there are also Swiss personalities who are countering and insisting on respect for neutrality and the rule of law.

 

by Dr iur. Marianne Wüthrich

 

Implementation of the sanctions against Russia:
“We are among the best in the world!”

“We are not only on track, we are among the best in the world,” Federal President Ignazio Cassis boasted to the Swiss state media on 16 April: “We have virtually sanctioned eight billion francs and we have seized twelve buildings.” To “track down Russian assets”, the Federal Council is working closely with EU, US and G7 task forces, Cassis said, adding: “This action by Switzerland is 100 per cent compatible with the country’s neutrality” – you almost cannot hear it anymore!3
  So quickly – and without opposition – is our sovereignty being sold off. At the same time, every person’s fundamental right to the protection of their personality is being thrown in the rubbish. Because according to Art. 16 Para. 1 of the "Ordinance on Measures in Connection with the Situation in Ukraine" of 4 March 2022 (which the Federal Council relies on the Embargo Act), an “obligation to report” applies to everyone: “Persons and institutions that hold or manage funds or know of economic resources that may be assumed to fall under the blocking pursuant to Art. 15 para. 1 must report this immediately to SECO.” Spying on neighbours? Along the lines of “Every Russian is suspect”? That is reminiscent of dark times…
  Let us give the floor to a Swiss expert to put this outrageous process into perspective, the former president of the Swiss National Bank and todays vice-president at the world’s largest US asset manager “Blackrock”, Philipp Hildebrand, who views todays situation for Switzerland, Europe and the world with concern not only as a banker but also as a Swiss citizen: “What worries me is the legal arbitrariness with which some of the actions have been taken. Who will decide which accounts are closed – which will force companies to close because they no longer have bank access and can no longer pay wages? Who will decide who is close to Putin? I wouldn’t be surprised if there is a lot of concern among clients of Swiss banks because for years they relied on the stability, legal certainty and long-term nature of Switzerland. These were the core values of the Swiss financial centre.4 Incidentally, the media are already discussing whether the obligation to disclose should also apply to lawyers – that would be the beginning of the end of lawyer-client confidentiality!

 

Swiss constitutional state: Here we are not (any longer) among the best

I asked the General Secretariat of the Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research (EAER) three questions about the confiscation of Russian assets and houses. Here are excerpts from the answers given by Michael Wüthrich, the media spokesman for the EAER.

What is the constitutional basis for the freezing of bank accounts and the seezing of buildings?

Michael W.: The Federal Council took the decision in principle [...] on 28 February to adopt EU sanctions in connection with the situation in Ukraine. [...] The ordinance on measures in connection with the Situation in Ukraine was issued by the Federal Council on the basis of the Embargo Act (EmbA) and will be adapted when new sanctions are adopted.

Note: The “Federal Act on the Implementation of International Sanctions” (Embargo Act) of 22 March 2002 allows the Confederation to take coercive measures to enforce sanctions imposed by the UN, the OSCE or “Switzerland’s main trading partners” which “serve to ensure compliance with international law, in particular respect for human rights”. (EmbA Art. 1) The EmbG lists some very widely defined articles as constitutional bases, for example FC Art. 54 para. 1: “Foreign affairs are a matter for the Confederation”. Everything can be based on this!
  From the point of view of international law, the only permissible sanctions against a state are those decided by the UN Security Council – which in fact hardly ever happens, because as a rule at least one of the five veto powers votes against it. The fact that Switzerland has laid down in law that sanctions imposed by “Switzerland’s most important trading partners” (the EU? the USA? China?) are to be enforced by means of coercive measures is also very questionable in terms of neutrality law. 

 

How do you seize a building?
The freezing of assets is to be distinguished from confiscation; according to the Embargo Act, property rights remain with the sanctioned person in the first case (rule of law). Houses, cars and the like are also blocked, provided these persons are listed. In concrete terms, however, these assets are not confiscated. Trading in them, however, is prohibited. As an example: a house may remain inhabited by a sanctioned person, but it may not be sold or rented out. 

Note: The guarantee of property is one of the most important fundamental rights in the constitutional state (Federal Constitution Art. 26). By theoretically leaving the sanctioned homeowner his or her property rights, the state cloaks the actual encroachment on the guarantee of property. If a homeowner is not allowed to rent or sell his house, what are his property rights? 

What remedies do the sanctioned individuals and companies have?

Currently, 1091 natural persons and 80 companies and organisations are listed in Annex 8 of the “Ordinance on Measures in Connection with the Situation in Ukraine” – analogous to the EU. [...]
  Individuals, companies and organisations sanctioned by Switzerland can submit a so-called delisting request to the competent Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research EAER. The EAER examines this and issues a contestable ruling. Any delisting would have to be decided by the Federal Council as a whole. This ensures that the rule of law is upheld.

Note: In order to be removed from the list, the person concerned must therefore apply to the same department that is entrusted with implementing the sanctions. The EAER, ultimately its head, Federal Councillor Guy Parmelin, examines the application and then decides, together with the other six Federal Councillors, whether the applicant’s name should be removed from the list. Since the decision on who to put on the list was made in Brussels and Washington respectively, the Federal Council is presumably neither willing nor able to judge the legality or illegality of the sanction. “The rule of law is therefore upheld,” replies the EAER – really?

 

Take countermeasures and hold on to Swiss values!

There is an urgent need for voices of dissent to these devastating events in Switzerland. There are some in our country, for example Guy Mettan, member of the Grand Council of the Canton of Geneva and former editor-in-chief of the “Tribune de Genève”, who was quoted in the last issue of Current Concerns with his striking statements on the abandonment of our neutrality by our “own team”.5 In a recent lecture, he called on us citizens to resist: “Switzerland has given up its neutrality, which it has held on to for two centuries, in a few days without a fight. I no longer recognise my country! Now it needs the resistance of a small minority.” That feels good.
  Blackrock banker Philipp Hildebrand also proves himself to be a good Swiss and a critical citizen of the world in a recent interview with the Handelszeitung(see box). Towards the EU, he advises Switzerland to “act wisely, buy time and wait to see how things develop.” Now is not the time to seek the next round of talks with Brussels. On neutrality: “Neutrality was indeed undermined very quickly, without a constitutional amendment and without a clear legal basis.” Hildebrand raises the question of what it means for diplomacy “if one could and would like to offer good services, but at the same time is no longer in a truly neutral situation and is therefore no longer even requested.” According to Philipp Hildebrand, Switzerland is facing a major challenge: “if the world moves back into a kind of Cold War logic, one has to rethink and articulate the foreign policy strategy [...].”6
  It is to be hoped that our representatives in Bern will “act wisely” in this sense and first rethink their positioning in Europe and in the world in the future, instead of manoeuvring our country into a situation from which we almost cannot find our way out.   •

 

READ MORE:

https://www.zeit-fragen.ch/en/archives/2022/no-10-10-may-2022/swiss-economic-sanctions-against-russia-undermine-neutrality-and-the-rule-of-law.html

 

 

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good old oliver….

 

ef. On the occasion of the presentation of his new documentary film about the assassination of John F. Kennedy at the BCN Film Festival in Barcelona, the well-known film director Oliver Stone also commented to the Spanish newspaper “El Pais” on Russian President Vladimir Putin, whom he last met three years ago: “The man I knew had nothing to do with the irresponsible and murderous madman that the media are now making him out to be, comparing him with Hitler and Stalin,” Stone said. In reality, he is a "good son of his country who wants to protect his people. The man I knew was rational, calm, always acting in the best interest of the Russian people, a true son of Russia, a patriot, which doesn’t imply he’s a nationalist.”
  Stone told “El Pais” that it was a long-term US plan to install a pro-Western, anti-Russian government in Ukraine, with the aim of making Ukraine a useful antagonist of Russia. Possibly the ultimate goal was to destabilise Russia and bring about regime change “to take Putin out and install another Yeltsin”. He described the USA as “a predatory dog” that would not stop at Russia and could later target China. He deplored the way in which Russia is portrayed as “the bad guy” and the US as “the good guy”. Stone went on to say: “The only thing the United States is concerned with is continuing to sell enormously expensive weapons to regimes with which it cooperates because that’s how its economy keeps growing”.


Also, red-hot today are his 2017 four-part documentary “The Putin Interviews”, as well as “Ukraine on Fire” (2016), a documentary on the background to the 2013-2014 Maidan protests, as well as the follow-up “Revealing Ukraine”, together with Igor Lopatonok, which continues the research about the ongoing Ukraine crisis (all still on YouTube so far).

Sources: El Pais of 26 April 2022;
popnews247.com

 

READ MORE:

https://www.zeit-fragen.ch/en/archives/2022/no-10-10-may-2022/oliver-stone-putin-always-acted-in-the-interest-of-the-russian-people.html

 

SEE ALSO:

https://yourdemocracy.net/drupal/node/43171

 

https://www.yourdemocracy.net.au/drupal/node/36261

 

an objective assessment of the situation…….

 

our nazi allies and our fascist intentions…...

 

NATO always pushing ukraine and zelensky for civil war…...

 

the truth may not be out there…...

 

the guy stuffed up "his" country by being a little shit to its russian-speaking people…...

 

propaganda tricks of warfare…….

 

and many more

 

 

READ FROM TOP.

 

 

 

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the US had run out of wars….

 

BY 

 

...

 

The 2020 election provided a classic example of the power of current economic trends over national election results. As of late 2019, the US economy was booming and Donald Trump was cruising toward an easy victory. Then COVID-19 hit, the economy imploded, and suddenly Trump no longer looked like a “very stable genius” to the crucial tranches of undecided, uninformed, and/or independent voters. Also, thanks to COVID and the economic implosion, Democrats could be whipped into a much more hysterical anti-Trump frenzy than would have been otherwise possible, leading to frenetic and heavily-funded get-out-the-vote efforts. So whether or not Trump is correct about alleged vote padding in swing states, he is certainly right that absent the COVID pandemic he would have won an easy re-election.

Now that we have established the crucial connection between economic trends and incumbent parties’ prospects in national elections, it’s time to ask the million dollar question: What the @&# are the Democrats thinking?! The Biden Administration, facing very tough midterm contests this year and at least equally monumental challenges in the 2024 presidential race, has made the apparently idiotic decision to blow up the US and global economies by provoking war with Russia.

As I write this, stocks, crypto, and even the bond market aren’t just swirling around the porcelain bowl, they’re plunging through the pipes and well on their way to the sewage treatment facility. The worst inflation in 40 years, driven in part by higher food and energy costs from Biden’s war on Russia, has forced the Fed to start ratcheting interest rates upward, pushing America towards 1970s-style stagflation at best, or a 2008 or even 1929 scenario at worst. Biden’s ever-escalating giveaway of US tax dollars to Ukraine is contributing to the economic as well as military mayhem.

Is Biden senile? Is Harris an idiot? Are the Democrats suicidal? Though the answer to the first two questions is undoubtedly “yes,” I’m not sure that the Democratic Party leadership and the oligarchs who own it are entirely bent on political self-destruction. There must be some sort of method in their apparent madness. And I think I know what it is:

“It’s the war mobilization, stupid!”

The oligarchs who own the Democratic Party (who may overlap somewhat with the ones that own the Republicans) aren’t going to seek success in 2022 and 2024 by riding a strong economy. Instead, they are hoping to win by dragging us into war and pounding their chests and telling us to support our fearless wartime leaders—and if you don’t you’re a treasonous unpatriotic Russia-loving Putin-loving Trump-loving transphobic white nationalist conspiracy theorist scumbag.

If the war gets bad enough, and the propaganda gets loud enough, people will put up with just about any amount of economic devastation. Consider World War II. Even though the US didn’t enter the war until more than two years after it started, and never experienced the level of combat and losses other nations suffered, the American people were quickly convinced to endure draconian rationing, forced conscription, virtual slave labor in war factories, and various and sundry economic unpleasantness, all in the name of defeating the evil racially-inferior slanty-eyed Japs and the evil white supremacist Adolf Hitler. FDR, who had cruised to re-election in 1940 by promising to keep America out of the war, had no problem winning in 1944 despite his broken promise (and his Pearl Harbor treason). When the nation is on a total war footing, people snap to attention and salute and do what they’re told and don’t ask questions, and the incumbent party and president enjoy almost godlike status.

My parents were children during World War II, and they (and my grandparents) experienced food rationing, gasoline rationing, and the near-total unavailability of all sorts of consumer goods, from appliances to automobiles. Sounds familiar? It’s like what we’re heading into now—only in 2022 we’re merely facing de facto rationing as many people can no longer buy their customary allotments of food, gas, and goods. Fortunately the authorities probably won’t start issuing ration coupons until the war really heats up.

And heat up it will. Biden’s seemingly crazy policies, foreign as well as domestic, make sense only on the assumption that we’re heading into all-out World War III. Why would the US refuse Russia’s repeated entreaties to negotiate Ukrainian neutrality and cap NATO expansion, thereby provoking a ruinous war? Why would US leaders refuse Russia’s (and Zelensky’s) overtures for a negotiated solution? Why would they create what will soon become a 100-billion-dollar arms pipeline to Ukraine, while pushing Finland and Sweden to join NATO—a move that Russia will inevitably greet with military strikes?

The real rulers of the US empire, the neoconservatives who overthrew the Republic on 9/11/2001, are bent on world conquest. A decision has apparently been made behind the scenes to fight World War III sooner rather than later, in service to the Wolfowitz Doctrine that the US will tolerate no challenges to its global hegemony.

The neocons have made their position clear: They will either rule the planet unilaterally or destroy it. That is why the Empire and its vassals are inflicting economic devastation on their own people, and the people of the world, as they frantically mobilize for the biggest and most destructive war in human history.

If we are going to stop it, the time is now. Once NATO is officially at war with Russia, dissent will be ruthlessly quashed. And once the nukes start flying, we will spend whatever is left of our lives wishing we had done more to stop the neocon Strangeloves from pursuing their mad dream of world conquest.

 

 

READ MORE:

https://www.unz.com/kbarrett/its-the-war-mobilization-stupid/

 

 

Read from top.

 

SEE ALSO:

https://yourdemocracy.net/drupal/node/43171

 

 

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