La Russia sospende il Trattato INF in “risposta speculare” all’interruzione statunitense dell’accordo

2 febbraio 2019 15:09 Un lancio di un missile da un sistema russo Iskander. Gli Stati Uniti dicono che 9M729, uno dei missili lanciati da Iskander, viola INF. © Sputnik / StringerIl presidente Vladimir Putin ha detto che Mosca sta fermando la sua partecipazione all’accordo nucleare dell’era della Guerra Fredda dopo la decisione di Washington…

via La Russia sospende il Trattato INF in “risposta speculare” all’interruzione statunitense dell’accordo — Notizie dal Mondo

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Le “esercitazioni difensive” della NATO

Le “esercitazioni difensive” della NATO

di Fabrizio Poggi

Che la NATO sia “un’alleanza difensiva”, non affatto “diretta contro la Russia”, lo dimostrano le zone delle esercitazioni militari dell’Alleanza e i tipi specifici di manovre. Sbarchi anfibi, attraversamenti di corsi d’acqua in prossimità di confini “nemici”, evacuazione di città, ecc. Ci si esercita, insomma, “alla pace” a oriente, mentre si lanciano bombe qua e là per il mondo.

E così: caccia F-15C “Eagle” e velivoli da trasporto C-130J “Super Hercules” dell’aviazione USA sono in Ucraina, per prendere parte alle manovre “Clear Sky 2018” iniziate ieri e che andranno avanti fino al 19 ottobre nelle aree centro-occidentali (regioni di Vinnitsa e Khmelnitsa) del paese, con la partecipazione di circa 700 uomini di Belgio, Gran Bretagna, Danimarca, Olanda, Estonia, Polonia, Stati Uniti e Romania. A parere del politologo Aleksandr Asafov, da un lato l’Ucraina costituisce “un adeguato campo di addestramento per la NATO”, in cui, tra l’altro non è nemmeno necessario prestare particolare attenzione a possibili incidenti (come quello verificatosi in Estonia lo scorso agosto), dato che già di suo “il paese è oggi territorio di illegalità; dall’altro lato, per l’Ucraina stessa, le manovre sono utili per la pratica vicinanza con truppe NATO”, diverse da quelle che vi stazionano stabilmente (ma non ufficialmente) per addestrare reparti ucraini regolari e battaglioni neonazisti. Secondo Asafov, si tratta non solo di una dimostrazione nei confronti della Russia, ma anche dell’addestramento pratico al combattimento coordinato.

A nome del Comitato per la difesa del Senato russo, Frants Klintsevic ha dichiarato che le “Clear Sky” costituiscono un aperto appoggio a Kiev nell’aggressione alle Repubbliche popolari di Donetsk e di Lugansk; nel corso delle esercitazioni, potrebbe venir messo a punto un possibile scenario di utilizzo dell’aviazione contro il Donbass, d’altra parte già ipotizzato dal generale Sergej Naev: in tal modo, tutti paesi che prendono parte alle manovre, ha detto Klintsevic, diventerebbero automaticamente parte del conflitto nel Donbass.

A proposito di spazi aerei, nei giorni scorsi un drone dell’aviazione USA RQ-4 Global Hawk, partito da Sigonella, ha sorvolato per circa 11 ore il territorio adiacente alle frontiere centro-settentrionali russe. Sorvolando Ucraina e Polonia, il drone, dallo spazio aereo lituano ha condotto alcune ore di ricognizione della regione di Kaliningrad. Passando poi ai cieli di Estonia e Lettonia, ha condotto oltre tre ore di esplorazione alle frontiere occidentali delle regioni di Leningrado e di Pskov. Il Global Hawk è simile al Lockheed U-2, il famoso aereo spia yankee in servizio sopra i cieli dell’URSS dagli anni ’50, che non ha affatto cessato il proprio “lavoro”, tanto che nei giorni scorsi topwar.ru scriveva dei nuovi sistemi d’addestramento dei piloti, ancor più selettivi che in passato, per adeguarli alle moderne apparecchiature elettroniche dei U-2S.

Tornano alle manovre, quest’anno, da ottobre a dicembre, si svolgono anche le biennali “Anaconda-18”, principalmente in territorio polacco, oltre ad aree di Lituania (tra l’altro, nei giorni scorsi è morto qui un militare tedesco, durante una esercitazione condotta dai famigerati “battaglioni multinazionali”, cui l’Italia partecipa per la Lettonia), Estonia e Lettonia e mar Baltico (in quest’ultimo, nel mese di agosto, la NATO aveva svolto esercitazioni navali con la partecipazione di una squadra giapponese). Per le “Anaconda”, Varsavia ha annunciato la presenza sul proprio territorio di 12.

500 militari, numero che, in base al Protocollo di Vienna, consente alla Polonia di non invitare osservatori stranieri. Suddivise in tre tappe, le manovre prevedono in ottobre il concentramento dei soldati; poi, dal 7 al 16 novembre, le manovre militari e dal 26 novembre al 6 dicembre esercitazioni a livello di comando. Alcuni momenti riguarderanno esercitazioni in ambiente urbano, in centri quali Bia?ystok e Che?m, a nord e a sud della bielorussa Brest, compreso poi l’attraversamento della Vistola da parte dei mezzi corazzati. Un po’ lo stesso “gioco” delle manovre “Saber Strike-2018”, condotte lo scorso giugno in Lituania con la partecipazione di 18.000 soldati di 19 paesi membri e partner della NATO, allorché a esser forzate furono le acque del Nemunas, che scorre in Bielorussia, Lituania e Russia». A metà novembre, poi, nella zona di Wielbark, nel nord della Polonia, le forze aeree si alleneranno ad atterraggi fuori delle piste aeroportuali, ipotizzando che missili russi “Iskander” e “Polonez” mettano fuori uso gli aeroporti polacchi. Nell’area di Bia?ystok, l’esercitazione coinvolgerà indirettamente anche gruppi di civili, allorché guardie di frontiera e difesa territoriale si eserciteranno a evacuare la popolazione dalle aree viciniore alla Bielorussia: fece lo stesso a suo tempo, nota sarcasticamente rusvesna, la Wehrmacht nel 1941 nell’avvicinamento alle frontiere dell’URSS.

Prima di “Anaconda”, dal 9 al 21 settembre si erano svolte il Lettonia le “Steadfast Pyramid 2018” e “Steadfast Pinnacle 2018”, con la partecipazione di una sessantina di alti ufficiali di N??? e Finlandia. Obiettivo formale dell’esercitazione: migliorare l’attitudine dei comandi alla pianificazione e gestione delle operazioni integrate. A sud, dal 2 al 9 settembre, esercitazioni simili – “Agile Spirit-2018 – si erano invece svolte alla base di Senaki, in Georgia, con la partecipazione di 237 ufficiali comandanti di USA, Georgia, Bulgaria, Romania, Estonia, Lettonia, Grecia, Ucraina, Repubblica Ceca e Turchia.

Prima ancora, a giugno, durante le “Baltops”, vascelli NATO avevano scaricato fanteria di marina yankee, rumena e polacca, insieme a cingolati anfibi, carri armati e veicoli ausiliari, che si addestravano a sbarcare sulle coste polacche del mar Baltico.

E il Baltico sarà ancora teatro di manovre dal 25 ottobre al 7 novembre, per le “Trident Juncture” che, quest’anno, tra Norvegia, mar Baltico e Atlantico settentrionale, vedranno impegnati 45.000 uomini di 29 paesi membri NATO, oltre ai due partner Svezia e Finlandia. A quanto pare, quelle di quest’anno, saranno le “Trident Juncture” più estese degli ultimi anni: quelle svoltesi nel 2015, avevano impegnato 36.000 militari; ma anche le più estese (sinora) in assoluto, quelle del 2002, denominate “Strong Resolve”, in Norvegia e Polonia, avevano coinvolto 40.000 soldati. In vista delle “Trident-2018”, i 5.000 uomini della cosiddetta Spearhead Force, altrimenti nota come Task Force Joint ad altissima prontezza, o VJTF, si stanno esercitando in Norvegia.

Come per tutte le altre esercitazioni, anche l’obiettivo delle “Trident Juncture”, come si era preoccupato di sottolineare l’ammiraglio James G. Foggo III, comandante del Joint Force Command di Napoli, presentando l’evento lo scorso giugno, è quello “innanzitutto di dimostrare che la NATO è un’alleanza difensiva”. Pare che ci riesca…

thanks to: l’Antidiplomatico

The Israeli pharmaceutical giant Teva must pay over $520 million following corruption charges

Israeli drug firm fined for bribing officials in Russia, Ukraine & Mexico

A building belonging to generic drug producer Teva, Israel’s largest company with a market value of about $57 billion, is seen in Jerusalem. © Baz Ratner / Reuters

The Israeli pharmaceutical giant Teva must pay over $520 million following corruption charges made by the US Department of Justice (DOJ). The company breached the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) by bribing officials in Russia, Ukraine and Mexico.

Teva is the world’s largest manufacturer of generic pharmaceutical products. According to the DOJ, its fully-owned subsidiary Teva LLC (Teva Russia) bribed a top Russian official to increase sales of the multiple sclerosis drug, Copaxone, during drug purchase auctions held by the Russian Ministry of Health.

Between 2010 and at least 2012, Teva earned an extra $200 million from Copaxone sales in Russia. The Russian official allegedly received $65 million through inflated profit margins. His name and department were not disclosed.

Overall, Teva will pay $520 million which includes the US criminal and regulatory penalties for its illegal activity in Russia, Ukraine and Mexico.

In Ukraine, Teva hired a senior government official in the Ministry of Health as “registration consultant.” Between 2010 and 2011, the Israeli company paid him a monthly fee and covered his expenses, amounting to $200,000. In Mexico, Teva bribed doctors to prescribe Copaxone from at least 2005.

“Teva and its subsidiaries paid millions of dollars in bribes to government officials in various countries, and intentionally failed to implement a system of internal controls that would prevent bribery,” said Assistant Attorney General Caldwell.

“Companies that compete fairly, ethically and honestly deserve a level playing field, and we will continue to prosecute those who undermine that goal,” Caldwell added.

“As demonstrated by this case, the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act has a long reach. Teva’s egregious attempt to enrich themselves failed and they will now pay a tough penalty,” said William J. Maddalena, Assistan

thanks to: RT

Here’s the Most Dangerous Thing About US Missile Defense in Eastern Europe

Italian military analyst Manlio Dinucci explains what he believes is the biggest danger emanating from the US deployment of its missile defense network in Romania and Poland.

NATO officials’ explanations aside, everyone, including the Russian president, seems to understand perfectly well that the US’s shiny new Aegis Ashore missile defense system in Deveselu, Romania, and the one being built in Redzikowo, Poland are directed against Russia.

And the reason, writes Il Manifesto military analyst Manlio Dinucci, is not because the system threatens to intercept Russian ICBMs and put the nuclear balance of power in jeopardy. “The reality,” he writes, “is much worse.”

In the course of his meeting with leaders from Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Iceland and Norway in Washington last week, President Obama reiterated his ‘concerns’ “about Russia’s growing aggressive military presence and posture in the Baltic-Nordic region,” and reaffirmed Washington’s commitment to collective defense in Europe.

“This commitment,” Dinucci recalls, “was demonstrated a day earlier at Romania’s Deveselu air base in the form of the inauguration of the US Aegis Ashore land-based missile defense system.”

US Army personnel cleans the red carpet ahead an inauguration ceremony of the US anti-missile station Aegis Ashore Romania (in the background) at the military base in Deveselu, Romania on May 12, 2016

© AFP 2016/ DANIEL MIHAILESCU US Army personnel cleans the red carpet ahead an inauguration ceremony of the US anti-missile station Aegis Ashore Romania (in the background) at the military base in Deveselu, Romania on May 12, 2016

“NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, who was present at the ceremony along with US Deputy Secretary of Defense Robert Work and Romanian Prime Minister Dacian Ciaolos, thanked the United States, because with this facility, ‘the first-of-its-kind land-based missile defense installation’, would significantly increase ‘the capability to defend European allies against the proliferation of ballistic missiles from outside the Euro-Atlantic area.'”

The secretary general “also announced the start of work in Poland on another Aegis Ashore system similar to the one that came online in Romania. The two land-based facilities are an addition to four US Navy Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense ships based at the Spanish base of Rota and deployed across the Mediterranean, the Black and Baltic seas, the powerful Aegis radar installation in Turkey and a command center in Germany.”

Speaking at the ceremony, Stoltenberg sought to emphasize that “the site in Romania as well as the one in Poland are not directed against Russia. The interceptors are too few and located too far south or too close to Russia to be able to intercept Russian ICBMs.”

“And what is the technology Stoltenberg is referring to?” Dinucci asked. “Both the ship- and land-based Aegis systems feature the Lockheed Martin Mark 41 vertical launching system, using tubes (located in the belly of the ship or in an underground bunker), launching the SM-3 interceptor missile.”

Hence, the analyst notes, “this system, called a ‘shield’, actually has an offensive function. If the US managed to achieve a reliable ABM system, they could keep Russia under the threat of a nuclear first strike, relying on the ability of their ‘shield’ to neutralize any possibility of retaliation. In reality, this is not possible at this stage, because Russia and even China are now taking a series of measures to make it impossible to intercept all their nuclear warheads in a missile attack. What then, is the US really trying to achieve with its Europe-based Aegis system?”

In fact, Dinucci notes, “this is something Lockheed Martin itself openly explains. Illustrating the technical characteristics of the Mark 41 vertical launching system…the company stresses the ability to launch ‘missiles for every mission: anti-air, anti-ship, anti-submarine, and to attack ground targets.’ Launch tubes can be adapted for any missiles, including the type ‘used for defense against ballistic missile attack, and long-range [cruise].’ It even specifies the types: ‘the SM-3 [interceptor] and the Tomahawk cruise missile’.”

“In light of this technical explanation,” the analyst writes, “the justification provided by Stoltenberg – that the instillation at Deveselu is deployed ‘too close to Russia to intercept Russian ICBMs’ is anything but reassuring. Because no one can really know about what kind of missiles are actually deployed in the vertical launchers at the Deveselu base, or on the ships which sail near Russian territorial waters.”

Moscow, Dinucci adds, cannot even be certain that the missiles aren’t nuclear-armed.

Therefore, the military analyst argues, “the inauguration of the missile defense base at Deveselu may signal the end of the Treaty on Intermediate Nuclear Forces, signed by the US and the Soviet Union and 1987, which facilitated the elimination of land-based missiles with a range of between 500-5,500 km, including the Soviet RSD-10s and the US Pershing 2s and Tomahawks based in Germany and Italy.”

A bundle of three Soviet RSD-10 missiles prepared for demolition at the Kapustin Yar launch site. The missiles were destroyed in accordance with the INF Treaty.

© Sputnik/ Vladimir Rodionov A bundle of three Soviet RSD-10 missiles prepared for demolition at the Kapustin Yar launch site. The missiles were destroyed in accordance with the INF Treaty.

“In this way,” he warns, “Europe is reverting to the climate of the Cold War, to the advantage of the US, which can use such a climate to increase their influence on their European allies. It’s no coincidence that at the meeting in Washington, Obama highlighted the ‘European consensus’ on maintaining sanctions against Russia, and praised Denmark, Finland, and Sweden and their ‘strong support’ for the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, which the US wants to sign by the end of the year.”

It turns out “that the Lockheed Martin launchers also contain a TTIP missile,” Dinucci concludes.

Sorgente: Here’s the Most Dangerous Thing About US Missile Defense in Eastern Europe

US missiles go live despite Russia warning

The United States is about to activate its missile systems across Europe, despite Russia’s warnings against a systematically increasing US-led arms deployment near its borders.

Almost after a decade of pledging to protect members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), Washington will on Thursday activate a web of missile systems it has deployed across Europe over the years.

American and NATO officials are slated to declare operational the so-called shield at a remote air base in Deveselu, Romania.

“We now have the capability to protect NATO in Europe,” said Robert Bell, a NATO-based envoy of US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter.

He claimed that the shield is supposed to protect Europe from an Iranian missile threat, a claim Moscow has repeatedly rejected, saying the missiles are aimed at Russia instead.

“The Iranians are increasing their capabilities and we have to be ahead of that. The system is not aimed against Russia,” Bell told reporters, adding that the system will soon be handed over to NATO command.

The US Aegis Ashore missile complex, Romania

He echoed US State Department spokesman John Kirby who had said the system “is defensive in nature” and therefore can’t be targeted “at anybody.”

Despite American assurances, Moscow accuses Washington of trying to neutralize its nuclear arsenal and buy enough time to make a first strike on Russia in the event of war.

Russia’s response

General Sergey Karakayev, commander of the Russian Strategic Missile Forces (SMF), downplayed the system’s impact, saying that the Russian military was paying “special attention” to enhance their weapons and overcome US missile defense systems.

“Threats from the European segment of the missile defense system for the Strategic Missile Forces (SMF) are limited and don’t critically reduce the combat capabilities of the SMF,” Karakayev (pictured below) said on Tuesday.

The general added that Russian ballistic missiles can carry new warheads and deliver them through energy-optimal trajectories in multiple directions, making their path difficult to predict for missile defense systems.

During a Senate hearing in April, US Principal Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Policy, Brian McKeon, requested a budget boost for the Missile Defense Agency, saying the funding was crucial for upgrading US missile systems to counter Russian and Chinese missiles.

Russia does not look favorably upon the North Atlantic Organization Treaty (NATO)’s growing deployment of missiles and nuclear weapons near its borders, with the Russian President Vladimir Putin saying in June last year that if threatened by NATO, Moscow will respond to the threat accordingly.

Sorgente: PressTV-US missiles go live despite Russia warning

Il Fracking a Pungesti e il Corriere della Sera

Altre foto/link utili su Pungesti

Sono le 2:30 di un quasi freddo pomeriggio di Los Angeles. Ho fatto tutte le cose che faccio di domenica – la corsa in riva al mare, le telefonate in Italia, il brunch con le amiche, facebook, il blog e la solita colazione a pane e petrolio.

Scorro le pagine del Corriere online, il piu’ grande giornale italiano.  Sono curiosa di cosa dicono del reparto fracking in Romania.

I titoli sono per le primarie del PD — le parolaccie di Civati e il chiodo di Renzi — con riferimenti agli altri neoquarantenni Alfano-Meloni-Salvini.  Il Berlusca che chiede qualcosa di delirante a SEL e a Grillo, c’e’ la statua abbattuta di Lenin a Kiev, il papa sui poveri, i forconi, ancora articoli su Mandela. Come potevano mancare il calcio o i reali di Inghilterra? E infatti ci sono.

Ci sono anche interessanti articoli sulle faccie che le donne fanno quando un orgasmo, i maglioni  dell’onorovele Rotondi,  le smorfie di Dudu, la coppia felice Santanche’-Sallusti a sciare, le modelle di Victoria Secrets a Miami, Martina Stella a Gardaland, Sara Tommasi mezza nuda, Miley Cyrus che twerka con Babbo Natale, Miss Francia e Kate Moss per i 40 anni di Playboy.

Manca una notizia, quella che cercavo.

La rivolta in Romania, a Pungesti, contro la Chevron sul fracking.

Non una parola che sia una.

E dire che sulla blogosfera dappertutto rimbalza questa notizia. E dire che e’ da Ottobre che se ne parla. E dire che ieri la polizia e’ intervenuta con la violenza sui manifestanti. E dire che la Chevron aveva prima annunciato di abbandonare i propositi di trivellazione, solo per rimangiarsi la parola 24 ore dopo ed annunciare che useranno solo “metodi convenzionali” in “pieno rispetto dell’ambiente”
per trivellare a Pungesti, in Romania.

Perche’ non ne parla nessuno?
Perche’ la resistenza dei rumeni non dovrebbe interessare agli italiani?

Forse perche’ va a contraddire il quadretto fracking e trivelle = gioia e benessere per tutti?
Forse perche’ questo non piace ai politici e ai petrolieri di casa nostra che non vogliono che si sappia che c’e’ gente che di fracking e buchi non ne vuole sentire?

La cosa piu’ bella sono le bandiere con i colori della Romania che si sono portati dietro.

Non possono dire quelli del Corriere di non sapere, ne ha parlato Reuters, ne ha parlato CNN, ne ha parlato la stampa spagnola, ne ha parlato la stampa francese. Ne ha pure parlato la stampa californiana, con tutto che la sede della Chevron e’ a San Fransisco (mica sono scemi!).

L’Associated Press lo chiama “Big Story”.

Ne parlano da giorni.

Perche’ il Corriere – il piu’ grande giornale italiano – non manda li un corrispondente a vedere che accade a Pungesti?

Io non lo capisco. Un giornale deve per prima cosa informare chi legge, e non importa se questo non e’ in sintonia con chi c’e’ dietro questi giornali.

In Romania migliaia di persone protestano da almeno due mesi contro le trivellazioni selvagge della Chevron. Ci sono stati scontri violenti con centinaia e centinaia di poliziotti che se la sono presi con i residenti ed gli attivisti giunti da tutto il paese, arresti, multe, manifestazioni di solidarieta’ a Bucarest. La Chevron che prima si ritira e poi ci ripensa e dice che invece che fracking faranno “trivellazioni ordinarie” senza che nessuno gli creda.

Basta solo fare google “Pungesti”.

Si vede che per la stampa italiana e’ piu’ importante Dudu’.

Qui vari link:

Associated Press
Chicago Tribune
Union Tribune San Diego
France 24
CNN
RT
RT – Spagnolo
Reuters
The Guardian

thanks to: dorsogna

Villagers From Pungeşti Stop Chevron Fracking Again, Riot Police Unleash Terror At Night In Retaliation

One of the poorest villages in Romania has been standing up against the US giant corporation Chevron for almost four months now. Subsequently, they are facing the Romanian State, brutality from riot police, and US army general Wesley Clark.

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A woman from Pungesti, Romania, refusing to move as ordered by the riot police protecting Chevron.

In an attempt to prevent fracking, villagers and activists broke the fences surrounding 22,000 acres of wide terrain, where Chevron is starting to explore for shale gas. The conflict has been mounting over the past week in particular, after the government imposed a military-style blockade against the village. The government police blocked the roads, basically isolating villagers: even children were not allowed to go to the near-by village school.

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With the help of activists from different Romanian cities, villagers managed to stop the explorations of Chevron on Saturday. The riot police, almost outnumbering them, failed to stop the resistors. The 500 strong anti-Chevron resistance defeated the 400 strong riot police, and managed to tear down the fences surrounding the explorations site. In anger, people threw stones at the Chevron equipment. The riot police responded with brutality.

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The following video shows how the villagers broke down the fences, chanting at the riot police: “Shame, shame on you!,” “Riot cops defend the thieves!,” “Romania: Police State!” During the conflict, riot cops broke the ribs of 25-year old Valentin Popa. “The police hit him with their sticks and with when he was on the ground they hit him with their boots,” villagers told a local paper.

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Private riot police were supported by the private security company hired by Chevron.

This video shows the private security agents attacking villagers with stones.

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While the conflict was still going on, Chevron issued a press release announcing they would again suspend their activities. Chevron proceeded to file a complaint against the local villagers for damaging their fences.

[LATER EDIT: The next day, Chevron issued another press release announcing they resumed their operations. People report local people being arrested at random in the village. 3 teenagers who were taking their cows to the commons were abducted by the riot police on Sunday morning and taken to the police station in Vaslui. All are underage.]

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Following this, dozens protesters were detained. 15 people will be prosecuted under the penal code, they risk at least 2 years of jail. 14 people will be criminally prosecuted for cursing the cops. 7 people were financially punished, and will be forced to pay fines from 500 lei to 5,000 lei for refusing to disobey the riot police’s orders. The fines are huge: 500 lei is almost the entire monthly pension of these people.

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A doctor from Vaslui, George Silvestrovici, tells the story of how he was illegally arrested and injured. “When I heard the police order people to move away, I left. In a hurry I fell and hurt my leg. I could not move, I stayed on the ground. Suddenly a riot police van came up and I was captured, with no explanation. I was taken to the police station in Vaslui, together with some dozens of protesters. They kept me there for 5 hours, no medical assistance, nothing. They never told me why they arrested me. Then suddenly they let us go. No explanation, nothing. This is an abuse.

After the skirmishes, some activists retired to their remaining tents that the riot police failed to dismantle days ago. The villagers ran to their homes, chased by the police, who blocked the road in and out of the village again.

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When night fell, the riot police unexpectedly unleashed terror against the village. They destroyed activists’ tents under the pretext of “being filthy,” as it happened in New York during the Occupy protests. A blockade was imposed again by the State troops, covering the entire Pungeşti commune.

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Riot police stormed into people’s houses, beating them, threatening them, and kidnapping them from their beds to take them to the police station. Some villagers were fined because they let activists sleep in their houses over night, “illegally.”

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People hid in their houses in darkness for fear of being attacked. 20 people were caught by the state thugs in the local store from the near-by village, Armăşoaia. They went there to keep warm, but were still brutally arrested by the riot police.

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Mariana Moroşanu, a local woman from the village Armăşoaia, called a TV station in Bucharest and described what happened: “Around 7:30 pm, I went to the local store for some groceries. Suddenly, a police van appeared down the road. 10 masked riot police descended. They ran towards us and started to hit us. They beat us brutally. They beat women and men, locals and visitors. They captured some people and threw them in their van. Someone threw a stone at their van. We will not give in, I tell you.”

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Vasile Lungu, a local man, confirmed this: “It was dark already and I was in the store. Suddenly masked riot cops stormed in. They started to hit us. A boy took out his phone to record what was happening. They attacked him and then they yelled at us that, if we dare film them, they will confiscate our phones. They ordered the lights out. A cousin of mine, who suffers from a handicap, and I were beaten just for being in the store. Then the riot cops told us: ‘If you tell anyone about this, we’ll be back.’”

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A witness wrote on Facebook how the riot cops were arresting people for simply walking down the streets, or from their houses and from a local bar. “I saw the riot police drag a local village man from his house into their van. They hit him repeatedly. Vlad Ioachimeacu and Claudiu Craciun were beaten. Hetti is running away so they won’t catch her. Let’s be clear. The riot police came to the village, when the night fell, to arrest the protesters they could not capture at the Chevron site during the day. Nobody is safe, not even the journalists. Nobody talks about this. If we don’t answer the phones, it means they took us in.”

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Another witness wrote this on her Facebook account: “They (the riot police) arrest people from their houses. They storm in, and beat people in their houses. We hide inside. The lights are out. We wait. What do we wait for? We don’t know. We’ve called 112 (the emergency police service) to ask for help, nothing happened. They said they can’t do anything about it. Outrageous!

Neocolonialism, the fracking way

What is happening at Pungeşti, one of the poorest places in Romania, is an all-out capitalist war. It has been underway for almost four months now. On one side are the US giant Chevron, lobbied among others by former US army general Wesley Clark,  the Romanian government and its armed thugs. On the other – the elderly poor locals from Pungeşti, parents and kids, and activists. Chevron, supported by the Romanian State, fights to get its hands on shale gas. The villagers continue to fight to save their land and water resources.

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On a side there is profit and military power. On the other people’s lives.

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On one side there is aggression, on the other self-defence.

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The Romanian State, who usually appear nationalistic and full of religious and patriotic values, is blatantly backing the US giant corporation. The Romanian government has given Chevron 22,000 acres of land in Pungeşti, by a special law, to start explorations for shale gas by hydraulic fracturing.

The government granted Chevron rights to explore for shale gas in three other places, in South-East Romania, in Constanţa county: Vama Veche, Adamclisi şi Costineşti.

The government ignored people’s fears that fracking would ruin water resources.

On the contrary, the government claims that fracking is essential for “Romania’s future development,” (classic government propaganda serving a capitalist agenda). They still have not justified why this “development” risks ruining people’s lives and destroying vital water resources.

Before the 2012 parliamentary elections, the current prime-minister, Victor Ponta opposed these deals, as he accused the former Prime-Minister, Mihai Răzvan Ungureanu (previously the chief of a secret Romanian service) for cutting a shady, secret deal. After he became Prime Minister, Ponta suddenly expressed support for Chevron and gave them the green light to start exploring. Him and the the Romanian president are the most staunch propagandists for Chevron.

How did this happen? It’s got a lot to do with the US Global Shale Gas Initiative.

Man in the shadows: former US Army General Wesley Clark presented as „an the excellent economist”, a.k.a fracking lobbyist

Victor Ponta, from the Social-Democrats, became prime-minister after huge street protests in Romania led to the sacking of two right-wing governments, backed by the current president. Soon after the coalition backing him won the local elections in the summer of 2012, and before they won the parliamentary elections too later that year, Ponta bragged he has a new adviser on issues of “economic strategy”: Wesley Clark, former US army general, whose order, while being NATO chief commander during the Kosovo war, for Russian troops to be attacked in Pristina was denied by a British general telling him: “I won’t start a third world war for you!”

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After he retired, he tried to run in the 2004 US presidential elections. Later on, Wesley Clark became executive at BNK Petroleum, which obtained licences to explore for shale gas in Poland, despite huge local opposition there.

Ponta explained how he was “so lucky” to meet Wesley Clark in Vienna, at a conference on energy, and convinced the former US army general to become his personal adviser: “I was incredibly lucky to meet (Clark). It is a great chance. General Clark is an extraordinary economist, he is involved at the highest level in developing economic strategies. He is a man anyone would want to work for him, and no prime-minister would miss such an opportunity.

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While visiting Romania in the summer of 2012, Wesley Clark declared: “I know shale gas has a great future in Romania. I think I can convince investors to come here and to help Romania’s economic growth. We know there is a global energy revolution underway, and Romania has lots of such resources. There are also lots of water resources which could be used to produce energy. I think Romania can become a major energy exporter,” in an interview for a local paper.

After the riot police imposed a military-style blockade against the people of Pungeşti, following their relentless resistance, the Romanian Prime Minister saluted the brutality of the police beating people: “I praise the riot police for their actions (beating old defenseless people) at Pungeşti. They enforced the law.

Locals are determined to resist Chevron, the government and their riot police, as the tensions grow day by day.

In another development, the local mayor of Oradea, north-west Romanian, refused a request by a Hungarian company, a subcontractor of Russian Gazprom, to start exploring for shale gas. Local media saluted the mayor’s refusal for saving their water resources.

Weeks ago, villagers from central Romania county of Sibiu blocked similar explorations by a Romanian company. Resistors took the company’s equipment and banned them from their land, despite being attacked and threatened by the police.

thanks to: revolution-news