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BRI vs New Quad for Afghanistan’s Coming Boom
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Afghan security forces deployed and start operations against Taliban around Torkham border point between Afghanistan and Pakistan in Nangarhar province, Afghanistan on July 23, 2021. Photo: AFP via Anadolu Agency / Stringer
Afghan security forces deployed and start operations against Taliban around Torkham border point between Afghanistan and Pakistan in Nangarhar province, Afghanistan on July 23, 2021. Photo: AFP via Anadolu Agency / Stringer

Over a week ago the excruciatingly slow Doha peace talks between the Kabul government and the Taliban resumed, and then they dragged on for two days observed by envoys from the EU, US and UN.

Nothing happened. They could not even agree on a ceasefire during Eid al-Adha. Worse, there’s no road map for how negotiations might pick up in August. Taliban supreme leader Haibatullah Akhundzada duly released a statement: the Taliban “strenuously favors a political settlement.”

But how? Irreconcilable differences rule. Realpolitik dictates there’s no way the Taliban will embrace Western liberal democracy: They want the restoration of an Islamic emirate.

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, for his part, is damaged goods even in Kabul diplomatic circles where he’s derided as too stubborn, not to mention incapable of rising to the occasion. The only possible solution in the short term is seen as an interim government.

Yet there is no leader around with national appeal – no Commander Massoud figure. There are only regional warlords – whose militias protect their own local interests, not distant Kabul.

Afghan militia gather with their weapons to support Afghanistan security forces against the Taliban, in Afghan warlord and former Mujahideen leader Ismail Khan’s house in Herat on July 9, 2021. Photo: AFP / Hoshang Hasimi
Afghan militia gather with their weapons to support Afghanistan security forces against the Taliban, in Afghan warlord and former Mujahideen leader Ismail Khan’s house in Herat on July 9, 2021. Photo: AFP / Hoshang Hasimi

While facts on the ground spell out balkanization, the Taliban, even on the offensive, know they cannot possibly pull off a military takeover of Afghanistan.

And when the Americans say they will continue to “support Afghan government forces,” that means still bombing, but from over the horizon and now under new Centcom management in Qatar.

Russia, China, Pakistan and the Central Asian “stans” – everyone is trying hard to circumvent the stalemate. Shadow play, as usual, has been in full effect. Take for instance the crucial meeting of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (former Soviet states) – nearly simultaneous with the recent Shanghai Cooperation Organization summit in Dushanbe and the subsequent Central Asia-South Asia connectivity conference in Tashkent.

The CSTO summit was 100% leak-proof. And yet, previously, they had discussed “possibilities of using the potential of the CSTO member states” to keep the highly volatile Tajik-Afghan border under control.

That’s very serious business. A task force headed by Colonel-General Anatoly Sidorov, the chief of the CSTO Joint Staff, is in charge of “joint measures” to police the borders.

Now enter an even more intriguing shadowplay gambit – met with a non-denial denial by both Moscow and Washington.

The Kommersant newspaper revealed that Moscow offered some “hospitality” to the Pentagon at its military bases in Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan (both SCO member states). The objective: keep a joint eye on the fast-evolving Afghan chessboard – and prevent drug mafia cartels, Islamists of the ISIS-Khorasan variety and refugees from crossing the borders of these Central Asian ‘stans.

What the Russians are aiming at – non-denial denial withstanding – is not to let the Americans off the hook for the “mess” (copyright Sergey Lavrov) in Afghanistan while preventing them from reestablishing any offshoot of the Empire of Bases in Central Asia.

They established bases in Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan after 2001, although they had to be abandoned later in 2004 and 2014. What is clear is there’s absolutely no chance the US will re-establish military bases in SCO and CSTO member nations.

Birth of a new Quad

At the Central Asia-South Asia 2021 meeting in Tashkent, right after the SCO meeting in Dushanbe, something quite intriguing happened: the birth of a new Quad (forget that one in the Indo-Pacific).

This is how it was spun by the Afghan Ministry of Foreign Affairs: a “historic opportunity to open flourishing international trade routes, [and] the parties intend to cooperate to expand trade, build transit links and strengthen business-to-business ties.”

If that sounds like something straight out of the Belt and Road Initiative, well, here’s the confirmation by the Pakistani Foreign Office:

“Representatives of the United States, Uzbekistan, Afghanistan and Pakistan agreed in principle to establish a new quadrilateral diplomatic platform focused on enhancing regional connectivity. The parties consider long-term peace and stability in Afghanistan critical to regional connectivity and agree that peace and regional connectivity are mutually reinforcing.”

The US doing Belt and Road right into China’s alley? A State Department tweet confirmed it. Call it a geopolitical case of “if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em.”

Now this is probably the only issue that virtually all players on the Afghanistan chessboard agree: a stable Afghanistan turbo-charging the flow of cargo across a vital hub of Eurasia integration.

Taliban spokesperson Suhail Shaheen has been very consistent: the Taliban regard China as a “friend” to Afghanistan and are eager to have Beijing investing in reconstruction work “as soon as possible.”

The question is what Washington aims to accomplish with this new Quad – for the moment just on paper. Simple: to throw a monkey wrench into the works of the SCO, led by Russia-China, and the main forum organizing a possible solution for the Afghan drama.

In this sense, the US versus Russia-China competition in the Afghan theater totally fits the Build Back Better World (B3W) gambit, which aims – at least in thesis – to offer an alternative infrastructure plan to Belt and Road and pitch it to nations from the Caribbean and Africa to the Asia-Pacific.

What is not in question is that a stable Afghanistan is essential in terms of establishing full rail-road connectivity from resource-rich Central Asia to the Pakistani ports of Karachi and Gwadar, and beyond to global markets.

For Pakistan, what happens next is a certified geoeconomic win-win – whether via the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, which is a flagship Belt and Road project, or via the new, incipient Quad.

China will be funding the highly strategic Peshawar-Kabul motorway. Peshawar is already linked to CPEC. The completion of the motorway will symbolically seal Afghanistan as part of CPEC.

And then there’s the delightfully named Pakafuz, which refers to the trilateral deal signed in February between Pakistan, Afghanistan and Uzbekistan to build a railway – a fundamentally strategic connection between Central and South Asia.

Full connectivity between Central Asia and South Asia also happens to be a key plank of the Russian master strategy, the Greater Eurasia Partnership, which interacts with Belt and Road in multiple ways.

Lavrov spent quite some time in the Central Asia-South Asia summit in Tashkent explaining the integration of the Greater Eurasia Partnership and Belt and Road with the SCO and the Eurasia Economic Union.

Lavrov also referred to the Uzbek proposal “to align the Trans-Siberian Railway and the Europe-West China corridor with new regional projects.” Everything is interlinked, any way you look at it.

Watching the geoeconomic flow

The new Quad is in fact a latecomer in terms of the fast-evolving geopolitical transmutation of the Heartland. The whole process is being driven by China and Russia, which are jointly managing key Central Asian affairs.

Already in early June, a very important China-Pakistan-Afghanistan joint statement stressed how Kabul will be profiting from trade via the CPEC’s port of Gwadar.

And then, there’s Pipelineistan.

On July 16, Islamabad and Moscow signed a mega-deal for a US\$3 billion, 1100-kilometer gas pipeline between Port Qasim in Karachi and Lahore, to be finished by the end of 2023.

The pipeline will transport imported LNG from Qatar arriving at Karachi’s LNG terminal. This is the Pakstream Gas Pipeline Project – locally known as the North-South Gas project.

The interminable Pipelineistan war between IPI (India-Pakistan-Iran) and TAPI (Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India) – which I followed in detail for years – seems to have ended with a third-way winner.

As much as the Kabul government, the Taliban seem to be paying very close attention to all the geoeconomics and how Afghanistan is at the heart of an inevitable economic boom.

Perhaps both sides should also be paying close attention to someone like Zoon Ahmed Khan, a very bright Pakistani woman who is a research fellow with the Belt and Road Initiative Strategy Institute at Tsinghua University.

Pakistani naval personnel stand guard near a ship carrying containers at the Gwadar port, 700kms west of Karachi, where a trade program between Pakistan and China operates. Photo: AFP/Aamir Qureshi
Pakistani naval personnel stand guard near a ship carrying containers at the Gwadar port, 700kms west of Karachi, where a trade program between Pakistan and China operates. Photo: AFP/Aamir Qureshi

Zoon Ahmed Khan notes how “one significant contribution that China makes through the BRI is emphasizing on the fact that developing countries like Pakistan have to find their own development path, rather than follow a Western model of governance.”

She adds, “The best thing Pakistan can learn from the Chinese model is to come up with its own model. China does not wish to impose its journey and experience on other countries, which is quite important.”

She is adamant that Belt and Road “is benefiting a much greater region than Pakistan. Through the initiative, what China tries to do is to present the partner countries with its experience and the things it can offer.”

All of the above definitely applies to Afghanistan – and its convoluted but ultimately inevitable insertion into the ongoing process of Eurasia integration.

(Republished from Asia Times by permission of author or representative)
 
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  1. 😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂hahaha hahaha,honestly i couldn’t stop myself

    BOOM, WTF is this clown Escobar going on about?

    There ain’t no ” boom” gonna happen in Afghanistan,its f@#ked,the only ” boom” most folks there are gonna experience are from more bombs

    Oh plus can someone please inform Mr Escobar about the water crisis and global heat because without water and the continuing high temperatures there really aint gonna be any future for Afghanistan,Iran,Iraq,central Asia,and a bunch of other ever heated miserable shit holes

    Escobar needs to set his alarm clock and wake up in the 21st century,someone also needs to tell him China is just another imperial project

  2. Taliban spokesperson Suhail Shaheen has been very consistent: the Taliban regard China as a “friend” to Afghanistan and are eager to have Beijing investing in reconstruction work “as soon as possible.”

    The Taliban like free money. Big news. And as with their opposition in Afghanistan, they know what to say in order to get it. Let’s see if the Chinese are as much suckers as the Americans were.

    I suspect that seeming like “winning” will be equally as seductive to the CCP as it was to the US MIC.

    • Replies: @Kali
    , @showmethereal
  3. Kali says:
    @Triteleia Laxa

    Dear Ron,

    We desparately need a “MORON!” tag. It’s the only way to deal with MORONS like Trite-liar and the stupid troll who can’t string a cohetent sentence together despite what he calls himself.

    …………….

    Dear Pepe,

    Thank you for your consistantly exellent reporting of the unfolding situation in Afghanistan.

    What a turn up for the books that the Yanks are trying for a BBsW (build back shitter) deal! 😉

    To be honest it seems that the BRI is a much better alternative all round, but depending what compromising dirt the MOSSAD and CIA have on key players, they really could throw a spanner in the works. What a great shame it would be if they get their way!

    Looking forward to your next instalment with bated breath.

    Kind regards,
    Kali.

    • Replies: @alwayswrite
  4. @Triteleia Laxa

    Your comment doesn’t make sense. China is in it for the economics – the US was in it for just about everything else. Nothing remotely similar. Call us back when you see Chinese military bases in Afghanistan. In case you didn’t know China and Afghanistan share a border. China is building infrastructure in all of it’s neighboring countries. The US accuses it of “debt trap diplomacy” while you are claiming “the Taliban like free money”. Which is it??? It can’t be both. But I will give you the answer already – which is “neither”.

  5. @showmethereal

    Your comment doesn’t make sense. China is in it for the economics

    “Investing” in large projects in Afghanistan for the “economics?”

    I can’t imagine you’re good with money.

    The US accuses it of “debt trap diplomacy” while you are claiming “the Taliban like free money”. Which is it??? It can’t be both.

    Both, but Chinese hubris will fall to Afghan flattery.

    The US administrators who have the courage to admit their own mistakes, must be in hysterics at the Chinese stepping up to do the same.

    US: “whatever happens China, please don’t attempt a Marshall Plan for Africa, we would hate that, you’ll be so powerful!”

    • Troll: d dan, showmethereal
  6. @alwayswrite

    United States has worked philanthropic miracles in Iraq—there were billions of weapons of mass destruction and then in Aghanistan where Today the Taliban understand Freedom and their brand of democracy and right to bear arms despite they have no second amendment. Then take a good look at Syria where that monkey king Obama wanted a regime change but Assad was voted in with larger majority than Obama —Trump or Biden and then Thank God ( the American one) for liberating Libya —there is no way that people who had the highest standard of living in Africa should continue to do so and so ”’We came We Saw –He died !!” –this is straight from the annals of history and it is a shame that Hillary Clinton and Hunter Biden will lead America in 2028 Trump will be there 2024-2028 and as he departs office –the USA debt will be touching 65 Trillion and negative interest rates ready to kick in. Exceptional indeed !!!!

  7. @Triteleia Laxa

    This is a big lie –USA cares NOTHING for NO ONE —understand you dimwit. The only thing USA wants is continual war war war and More WAR —— the god you trust in is in reality Satan–a murderer and Liar from the beginning —-renewed in 1776 with a bunch of idiots along the Delaware —

  8. The USA ONLY EVER ‘offers’ slavery, servitude and the requirement for TOTAL obedience. And not just to the USA, but its controller, Israel, as well. How alluring for traitors, boot-lickers and spivs. Austfailia is an example of what happens after 150 licking Britannia’s bloody jack-boots, followed by seventy years of licking the USA’S.

    • Agree: GomezAdddams
  9. @showmethereal

    The USA’s almost continual aggression and genocide for 200 years was for the purpose of economic exploitation. The USA is and ever has been a blood-sucking vampire on humanity’s neck.

    • Agree: GomezAdddams
    • Replies: @Malla
  10. Malla says:

    All this recent political development is good news for China’s BRI plans. If all the countries are cooperative, all of them could be integrated into a grand system and thus there could be more regional trade. Turkey, Iran, Afghanistan, the countries of Central Asia, Pakistan etc… all could get more integrated along with access from Russia and China.

    • Replies: @Badger Down
  11. El Dato says:
    @Triteleia Laxa

    This is looking at the world with an American mindset and American diplomacy heuristics, and possibly projecting.

    The US administrators who have the courage to admit their own mistakes, must be in hysterics at the Chinese stepping up to do the same.

    But they don’t “do the same”.

    Chinese hubris will fall to Afghan flattery.

    China be like “Just the facts, Monsieur”. That’s the guys who are taking over Tibet lock, stock and barrel, remember? While America was worrying about beheadings, gay rights and boy rape as a side-dish to having a platform for doing a pincer movement on Iran which never came, the area is just China’s “borderlands”. They have to deal with it and they will.

    “whatever happens China, please don’t attempt a Marshall Plan for Africa, we would hate that, you’ll be so powerful!”

    Haha, Amerikanski! Maybe they will leave a large area for animals and autochthones.

    Btw, Afghanistan is a great region. If it was safe for hardcore tourism …

  12. @alwayswrite

    Pepe has reached the great ‘Godfree Roberts’ level of political satire.

    Zoon Ahmed Khan notes how “one significant contribution that China makes through the BRI is emphasizing on the fact that developing countries like Pakistan have to find their own development path, rather than follow a Western model of governance.”

    She adds, “The best thing Pakistan can learn from the Chinese model is to come up with its own model. China does not wish to impose its journey and experience on other countries, which is quite important.”

    She is adamant that Belt and Road “is benefiting a much greater region than Pakistan. Through the initiative, what China tries to do is to present the partner countries with its experience and the things it can offer.”

    Does that include suicide bombing Chinese engineers or attacking the hotels they stay in or trying to suicide bomb the Chinese Ambassador or attack the Chinese consulate in Karachi. Such grateful people the Pakistanis.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2021/07/16/world/asia/china-pakistan-bus-crash-blast.html

    • Replies: @showmethereal
    , @Malla
  13. @alwayswrite

    Why can’t people see China as an imperial project,an extreme nationalist one at that,they aint in Afghanistan for charitable reasons,they couldn’t care less if the Taliban kill or rape or act in a medieval backwards way as they’re basically,apart from being nationalist,a totalitarian regime run by one man

    Grow some brains folks and stop seeing China through Escobars rose tainted specks 😉

  14. @Kali

    BRI is Chinese infrastructure imperialism,no different to what the British Empire did,you know building railways everywhere,didn’t they even have a plan to build a railway from Egypt to Cape Town,so nothing of interest really,and don’t forget the Brits only did all that building so they could exploit Africa more efficiently,so too will China,i do wish you folks would do a Marxist 101 class as I’ve no doubt how they’d see China,well actually i know,basically China just another imperial state exploiting its own workers and willing to go to war in a capitalist world which they are absolutely a part of,so sorry China ain’t no antidote to American or Western capitalism its actually part of the system,and its a system totally f@#king the world so folks can ‘ consume’

    China,meh,big shithole and they also have a problem with water which along with extreme heat is gonna f@#k vast swathes of this planet,its already happening and the Chinese don’t have a plan for it, nobody does

    We’ve taken the piss out of mother nature for the last century and now she’s gonna punish us all,and no amount of flash f@#king wizbangs from Putin,Chinese communism,Iranian religious nutters,or western market solutions are gonna save us,i personally want mother nature to f@#k humanity back into the stone age,because thats about the highest sustainable level we can actually live at,everything else is BS

    Mark my words we are now into full revenge mode and it ain’t gonna be pleasant,extreme heat,draught,biblical famine, pandemics its all gonna come down,and the more people who leave the land for the cities and urbanized palaces the more violence and state repression you’ll get

    My advice get out of your town or city,arm yourself keep one up the spout for yourself and family and stop reading feel good BS from idiots peddling more imperialism/ capitalism crap

    • LOL: antibeast
    • Troll: d dan, Mulga Mumblebrain
    • Replies: @Rahan
    , @Kali
  15. @Triteleia Laxa

    “The US administrators who have the courage to admit their own mistakes, ” Please, please tell me you didn’t mean that. The idea of the US admitting ANY mistake, however trivial, is so fantastic it makes me think about Alice & rabbit holes etc.

  16. Svevlad says:
    @alwayswrite

    Somebody didn’t read their Anatoly Karlin.

    With rising temperatures, dry regions will become wetter.

    Of course, you have the tone of someone who masturbates to the thought of every “shithole” being hyperbrutally exterminated and/or enslaved forever, and then using the land as WMD testing grounds, or some even worse humiliation.

    • Replies: @alwayswrite
  17. Rahan says:

    People tend to underestimate the extent to which today’s megacorps hate China.
    It’s more logical to think of the “liberast left and their media and academia pals”, or the “neocon right and their Pentagon/CIA/merc pals”, but people tend to forget the megacops.
    Not only were they thrown out of China they moment they refused to follow local rules.
    (“Because of freedom” no less, but in just a few short years they started making their own cybergulag which only they get to control…)
    The bigger threat, perhaps, to them is if the world start pushing back at their power the way China does to its homegrown megacorps. They fear this would be a contagious example.
    Look at their muppets moaning about it.
    At first they’re like “Noo, China don’t control your megacorps this is bad for you!”, but then they were like “Very well then, this means war.”

    [MORE]

    So when dealing with some rabid anti-China troll that’s pretending to be defending the honor of the West from the way it was in the 1990s against a China the way it was in the 1970s, remember this.

    Sometimes they are neither channeling the liberast left nor the neocon right, but the megacorp branch of globohomo.

    • Agree: antibeast
    • Replies: @Joe Levantine
  18. Rahan says:
    @alwayswrite

    My advice get out of your town or city,arm yourself keep one up the spout for yourself and family and stop reading feel good BS from idiots peddling more imperialism/ capitalism crap

    This is like a mirror universe Andrew Anglin with a pointy beard reaching through his mirror logic the same conclusions as this universe’s Andrew Anglin.

    Then again, few people remember (and he never brings it up himself) that in his idealistic young adult days Anglin was an anarcho-green who walked the walk and went to live with a jungle tribe for a year.

    Only after this radical stepping outside of the western cultural bubble did he, upon return, begin his journey of alienation and hit-and-run virtuoso culture-jamming.

  19. Kali says:
    @alwayswrite

    “Why can’t people see China as an imperial project,an extreme nationalist one at that,they aint in Afghanistan for charitable reasons,”

    You may well be correct, little man, and it may be that all of the talk comming out of China and Russia regarding their respect for “national sovereigty” is a lie, though I’m inclined to give it credence.

    Strictly speaking I see all centralised contol structures as an anethma to our potential as a species, and would do away with every government on Earth in favour of truly representative autonomous regional councils working in cooperation with their neighbours, but that’s anothrr story.

    The situation the world currently faces requires the elimination of (((the hegemon))) in very quick order. The only actors on the world stage capable of eliminating mankinds greatest foe, by economic or by more forceful means are Russia/China in partnership with the global south and east.

    “My advice get out of your town or city,arm yourself keep one up the spout for yourself and family and stop reading feel good BS from idiots peddling more imperialism/ capitalism crap”.

    Armed with knowledge of myself and of the institutions of hegemonic control, I exited the system many ywars ago, and have done battle against it in various forms and various forums.

    By now I have a fair idea what I’m doing, and what we’re up against.

    We shall see what the future holds.

    Kali.

  20. KA says:

    China and India are different species .
    India extracted the right of connectivity between its western and eastern provinces through Bangladesh without offering similar connectivity between Nepal and Bangladesh . There have been other one sided ultimatum . Some of them have been realized to the detriment of Bangladesh . Nepal and Bhutan have similar stories to tell .

    China introduces different paradigm .

    India will eventually pay for this short centered narrow world view .

    Why does India do it ? Why China doesn’t follow this game ?
    To follow Indian model , China has to hurt Afghanistan or Pakistan or Iran and force it’s way . That is only possible by adjusting and accommodating the American
    geopolitical strategy of economic and political control of all those 3 states including of China . To make this possible , China has first to create or have at least 2 classes – elite and the rest . Elite will exploit the rest , West get to exploit both .

    India is allowed to get away with hurting local because it allows itself to be screwed by USA .

    Indian doesn’t mind . Elite India gets to enjoy the crumbs thrown or discarded by the west and carry the tradition of being the old upper caste at home and enjoy being worshipped as gifted , industrious , patriotic and intelligent by the rest who are powerless ,emotional , fanatic, and rabidly anti Muslim, anti Christian , anti Buddhist , anti Sikh – in that decreeing order . Later worships the elite more when they find that these elites have been given accolades and have received prestigious recognition from. West . Elite in turn monopolizes the access to the education , job , power and glamor .

    Indian doesn’t recognize its genius until it has been recognized by the west , thus enslaving itself to western mind control .

    China and India differ on a fundamental level .
    Until India accepts its lowly fellow Indians as worthy or equal or deserving , it can’t break free of this massive counter prevailing anti modern forces .

    Even if for the sake of arguments, if we assume that the minorities are not fully credited with similar rights and opportunities , China still takes care of the majority. That is 70% of the population .

    Here I believe in trickle down economy . If 70 % improve their lot , the teaming 30% will join soon even if that are not the intended goal .

    India abuses the 20% Minorities to exploit the 90% of the remaining 80% of the majority Hindu .
    It has never sincerely tried or wanted to remedy the pathetic situation of the majority of its own religious cultural kindred .

    To a large extent , Indian elite to Indian masses is what Saudi , Emirati are to Egyptian Indonesian or Pakistan – sources of cheap labor and dummies for abuses as fanatic religious foot soldiers . These Muslims for too long remained awed and blinkered and missed the dangerous double lives and roles of Saudi. Indian middle classs and indigent Hindu try to bask in the glory of the few ( Hindu ) and honor them , worship them, validate and empower these top segment of Indian society by allowing themselves to be drunk with the religious Kool Aid .
    Systemically their identities have been destroyed and reduced and new ones have not been allowed to develop except through policies of top down approval and focus on the religious solidarity .

    Mirroring the same pattern , Indian elite has sought glory prestige and identity in the Anglophone Anglo sphere world by subjugating to the western demands and by accepting the western approval as the final arbiter in evaluating itself and its enemies .

    • Thanks: antibeast
  21. @Svevlad

    Karlin thinks climate change and hotter temps will be good for Russia

    Well i bet there’s a lot of folks from the Russian Academy of Science who will disagree with him,as the perma frost regions currently melting have no infrastructure for agricultura the land has questionable agricultural value the land is currently becoming more unstable and apparently giving off Radon gas and Anthrax,which ain’t good for your health!

    Russia is currently heating up faster than anywhere else, this wont bring about some sort of dividend for Russia as the costs to its oil and gas infrastructure are gonna be huge due to them being built upon the melting permafrost

    I see Russia is again having terrible forest fires, basically Russia is f@#ked same as everyone else, its simply not viable as a state once you factor in climate change on top of all the other poor demographic and economic metrics

    And i think its Karlin who ” masturbates ” over negative effects of climate change judging by what he wrote on his blog back in 2012, in an article called, How i stopped worrying about climate change….

    You should look that up before you start spouting shite !

  22. @Kali

    There is no future just more of the same,why you give credence to China and Russia is simply beyond me,ok your logic, get rid of America and think the world a better place?

    I don’t think so

    Please wake yourself up,the Chinese have been imperial power throughout their long history they now thinks its their turn,just more imperialism thats all,and they’ll help destroy themselves and all of us with them through their stupid ponzi economy,basically more capitalism,very destructive,a race down to the bottom as they compel poor countries to strip mine everything so that zombie factories in china can keep going although the young don’t want the 9/9/6 regime,but Jack Ma thinks slaving your guts out doing 70+ hours a week is some sort of privilege/ honour,its that kind of exploitation which inspired Marx,so basically china,a big shit hole exploiting its workers and capturing them into its totalitarian digital nightmare regime,which is just more consumerism leading to more fat and obese Chinese at the end of the day,the great leaderXi can dress all this BS up by claiming it has Chinese characteristics,but at the end of the day its just western capitalism,and total bolloxs

    China aren’t Russia friend either, they’re waiting for the stupid Russian to exhaust themselves in a daft arms race with America,although Putin probably thinks he’ll see off the Americans this time,hint, he won’t,all he’ll do is bankrupt his country and hand large parts over to the Chinese who can’t wait to assit strip eastern Russia of its natural resources,although they’d better get a move on as the place is going up in smoke, or melting into mush

    You can think whatever you want by the way,you can have all the daft little council things you like,but unfortunately with 8 billion people existing on what will become more difficult and inhospitable land you’ve got no chance,as soon as we started farming we were f@#ked,we’re nothing but a big nasty cancer on this world,and mother nature is gonna give us all the corrective medicine to put things right and that’s way beyond the capacity of idiots in China,Russia,Brussels,London or Washington to deal with,its too late,Greta is about a hundred years plus a couple of thousand years of industrialisation and agricultural development too late,she should learn to enjoy herself whilst she still can!

    There is no hegemon,only nasty self serving and unsustainable civilisation,which is a recipe for elites temples and BS to form into self destructive force’s,mankind’s highest point of developing was ten thousand years ago before agriculture and cities,since the development of those its,all been down hill and now all we have are fat obese idiots eating themselves to an early grave,rapping the planet for junk food but not for much longer as that heat is coming and its gonna cleanse this planet of civilisation

    • LOL: Kali
    • Troll: d dan
  23. There is no hegemon,only nasty self serving and unsustainable civilisation,which is a recipe for elites temples and BS to form into self destructive force’s,mankind’s highest point of developing was ten thousand years ago before agriculture and cities

    That’s the most depressing solution to the Fermi Paradox I’ve heard.

    • Replies: @alwayswrite
  24. @Grahamsno(G64)

    Deal with the truth,this isn’t life,cities,big tech,consumerism its all total self defeating BS and absolutely nobody has any solutions,the only one i can think of is in the near future some clever soul can upload each person into their own personal paradise,preferably off world to live out their new virtual ‘life’ inside some sort of giant computer,possibly on the moon

    Then mother nature can be left in peace to restore herself back to health,one things a fact as long as the parasites,human cancer, are on earth there ain’t much hope or future for them,mankind is f@#ked its had its chance and blown it,the only hope is to upload, by speeding time up within a virtual world i suspect you would in fact not need to much computronium,as each virch ‘ life’ would only last relatively speaking a few days,so thats my solution all the rest is just BS legacy dumb none thinking shite

    • Replies: @antibeast
  25. alwayswrite @ 22

    “…get rid of America and think the world a better place?

    I don’t think so”

    Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it.
    Mark Twain

    If the shoe fits, wear it.

  26. @Grahamsno(G64)

    If you had any clue you would know those attacks are carried out by Balochstan separatists. They are trying to bring down the Pakistan government. So they attack economic development. These are not average Pakistanis…

  27. antibeast says:
    @alwayswrite

    You sound too gloomy.

    While I agree with you that ‘modernism’, ‘industrialism’, ‘urbanism’ and ‘materialism’ have adversely affected the natural environment, China has come up with its own version of ‘Eastern Modernism’ to ameliorate these problems. A good example is China’s decision to bet the farm on electric-powered public transport such as high-speed rail, light-rail, subway, electric buses, trams, maglevs, etc. to reduce its dependence on imported oil for gas vehicles. By shifting to more efficient electrified means of public transportation which can be supplied with domestic and/or clean sources of energy, China aims to reduce air pollution, traffic congestion, energy consumption as well as its reliance on oil imports. Green consumerism has taken off in China in the form of its booming wellness, welfare, eco-tourism industries, etc. Recycling industries have become big business in China as environmental consciousness has seeped through all sectors of the economy with the State now actively protecting the natural environment through urban planning, industrial policies and agricultural preservation.

  28. @Kali

    “ Strictly speaking I see all centralised contol structures as an anethma to our potential as a species, and would do away with every government on Earth in favour of truly representative autonomous regional councils working in cooperation with their neighbours, but that’s anothrr story.”

    Well said, however, this is the story. No salvation for mankind without these most essential two steps of decentralisation and cooperation.

    • Thanks: Kali
  29. @Rahan

    All this propaganda made me lose a bundle on my Chinese stocks but I decided to double down. When my broker was fuming at the way the Chinese government is dealing with Chinese mega corporations, my answer was that China is doing the right thing for the future of the Chinese society by keeping the corporate elite under the thumb of CCP. When power and extreme wealth gets the heads of the corporate elites fuming with unbridled intoxication, a central powerful authority should remind them who is boss. Kudos for Xi and his CCP apparatus.

    • Replies: @Rahan
    , @showmethereal
  30. There’s no such thing as ‘ green consumerism ‘ its still consumerism but with corporate BS

    There’s no such thing as ‘ clean energy ‘ everything depends upon some form of degradation of the environment somewhere

    If oil is reduced what happens to oil produces?

    Russia still depends upon oil,disruptive technologies will reduce their budget,same for all OPEC countries

    China’s new green economy will be at the expense of Russia,supposedly its big new best friend,and climate change cost to Russian oil and gas infrastructure is calculated in the trillions of rubles!

    So Russia,who don’t have much of any sort of plan for this new green economy/ future look buggered

    Russias biggest trade partners in the EU will also go green,and clearly state they wont include any countries under sanctions to develop their green hydrogen economy,so nothing there for Russia either

    A combination of green economics,disruptive tech,water crisis and heat are the future all heading towards the perfect storm,hyper green economics equal just more competition for the raw materials plus a reduction in global supply chains as reshoring and advanced manufacturing make the just in time supply chain model redundant

    Some folks thought it was gonna be peak oil that would create the end but its gonna be peak water and heat no amount of glossing this over with fancy electric public transport is gonna make the slightest difference,its basically too late

    The next few decades will see the world form into regional ghettos,the barriers are gonna come up and those at the bottom of the heap really are f@#ked, either in the third world or first,it’ll make no difference,the only immediate solution would be a truly deadly pandemic which killed about 6 billion people,we could perhaps then have some sort of resetting after that,but even then I’d suspect it’d be business as normal,so it’ll have to slow death from heat lack of water and famine,plus civil wars like Syria,incidentally also caused by draught and water crisis,to thin out the consumers,maybe the Chinese can have another great leap and kill a few hundred million or upload themselves,who knows

  31. Malla says:
    @Grahamsno(G64)

    Grahamsno(G64) , are you sure our Indian RAW was not involved?
    Pakistani foreign secret service ISI supports Kashmiri Independence struggle against India, Indian foreign secret service RAW supports Baluchistan Independence struggle against Pakistan as well as tries to screw up CPEC. Tit for Tat.
    Without CPEC, India can hold China by the b@((s via its Andaman and Nicobar Island chain close to the Mallaca straits, in case of any confrontation. However the Indian Navy can easily screw up Gwadar port as it did the last time when it blasted Karachi port in our earlier war with Pakistan. China will have to either post naval military resources there or make sure Pakistan Navy has the capabilities to protect Gwadar from the Indian Navy. Gwadar as a deep water port has the ability to handle more tonnage of shipment as compared to all of India’s port combined (India has a long coastline) plus Chabahar of Iran. Let that sink in. Now since Iran has gone on the Chinese side, Chabahar and Gwadar can become sister container ports in an integrated BRI system.

    • Replies: @Grahamsno(G64)
  32. Malla says:
    @KA

    To follow Indian model , China has to hurt Afghanistan or Pakistan or Iran and force it’s way

    India hurt Afghanistan by building dams and infrastructure there? Right.

    Elite India gets to enjoy the crumbs thrown or discarded by the west

    Isn’t that is what the Pakistani elite did in the Cold War when it allied with the USA? The problem is India is too big of an economy (and the Indian elite too rich) to live on the crumbs of the West.

    Here I believe in trickle down economy .

    Tell that to the Pakistanis where feudalism is rife and few feudal families still run the state. Many of those feudal elites have their children in the West (and now recently China) just like the Indian elites having their kids in the West. So many of the Pkaistani elites have assets in Great Britian and the United States or Dubai.
    Pakistan never had the Bhoodan land redistribution movement India went through under Vinobha Bhave. Pakistan is basically the modern version of Mughal India (like North Korea is the modern version of Hermit Kingdom Joeson Dynasty Korea). Mughal India where, the population was squeezed hard so that 70% of the economy was controlled by just 600 to 700 elite families.

    India abuses the 20% Minorities to exploit the 90% of the remaining 80% of the majority Hindu .

    Sure but Pakistan has this tradition for much longer. Hindutva came to power recently and though the earlier Government at times exploited the minorities and at times took the side of minorities against Hindus, India remained a secular country. But Pakistan has bad history for way longer.

    Hindu Houses Burned Down in Pakistan


    Pakistani Christians Call Out Pakistan’s Hypocrisy

  33. Malla says:
    @KA

    Indian elite has sought glory prestige and identity in the Anglophone Anglo sphere world by subjugating to the western demands and by accepting the western approval as the final arbiter in evaluating itself and its enemies .

    This is pure bullshit. If the West was to vaporize away from the World tomorrow, India will not become a Chinese ally or a Pakistani ally. And not because the elites would not want it, the masses would not accept it . India did not chose to become anti-China because of Western directions, India chose to ally with the West because of the common threat of China. Even during the Cold War when India was a Soviet ally, India and China were not friendly. India and China are not friendly now. India has made it clear to Russia about its issues with China and India is trying to balance its Indo-US and Indo-Russian relationships. India is such a slave of the West that it is going ahead with purchase of Russian S-400 system inspite of the threats of US sanctions.
    You need to get this straight, Indian Westernised elites are anti-West. Some of them are Hindutvas and some of them are liberal or leftists. The liberals and leftists though Westernised in tastes are extremely anti-West in geopolitics, pro-Soviet, pro-Marxist. Love American culture but hate the USA. Love British culture but geopolitically dislike the West. If you do not understand this, you understand nothing. It is these guys who migrate to the West and vote Democrat or Labour party. Indian super elites who settle in the West take their leftist ideologies with them. The ones below them play their hypocrisy game, vote leftist (traitor parties) in the West, support the Right back home because it is good for the tribe.
    It is the masses who are more Hindutva and recently anti-Marxist. In India recently Marxism (Leninism + Maoism) is considered anti-nationalism in contrast with countries of East Asian where it has become the opposite.
    It is Pakistan which jumped shipped after being burnt by the USA.
    The truth is India is too Independent and and feisty as a geo-political entity to be a great ally. That is why India gets along so well with France. Because France has that rebellious streak in NATO. Both India and France look at each other as pals in that sense. India would have been a more terrible ally to China and is preferable as an enemy. The Chinese tendencies towards Confucian-Maoist authoritarianism would seriously clash with India’s freedom loving, rebellious streak. Pakistan with its slave mentality and ass licking mentality is more suited. Pakistan does not have much options now but the CPEC may end up doing good for them, kowtowing to China will benefit them. India has a stiff back. I repeat, China benefits with India as an enemy rather than an ally. What China;s main threat is an Indian-USA alliance, because the combine weight would be heavy to take on. But that is breaking apart under Biden. Basically things are going good for China right now in that area.

    • Replies: @Anon
  34. @Malla

    Malla,

    Glad to know that you escaped the Covid carnage, hope that all’s well with you and family.

    About RAW involvement I am sure that they throw money around but that’s about it, they are an extremely incompetent bunch not fit to polish the shoes of real intelligence agencies like the ISI. I have Baloch colleagues who thank Modi for the moral support, they tell me those CPEC investments in Balochistan are going to be really expensive besides that this Islamic fundamentalist tiger that Pakistan’s been riding and wants badly to dismount has started roaring again with the US abandonment of Afghanistan. It’s going to be a Pyrrhic victory for Pakistan and they will regret it.

    • Replies: @Malla
  35. antibeast says:

    Climate change will induce extreme weather events causing torrential rains (as is happening in Europe), drought (as is happening in Central Asia), wildfires (as is happening in Siberia and California), etc. The solution is more not less State investment in public infrastructure in the form of canals and dikes as well as scientific research in weather forecasting, forest monitoring, etc.

    Green consumerism is possible with environmentally-sensitive services industries such as wellness, eco-tourism, etc. Consumer goods waste-recycling can also mitigate the impact on landfills and reuse plastics, paper and metal scrap. Food waste-disposal can be used to generate biomass energy.

    Green transportation is possible by promoting public over private transport, obviating the need for gas vehicles with 20-year lifespans, 90% of the time parked in a lot which uses up space in a city or town. Switching to electric vehicles hired on as-needed basis reduces the number of units which needs parking, thus freeing up space in a city or town.

    China’s success in raising the standard of living of the largest cohort of people in the history of the world in less than a century would actually induce a sharp fall in its birth rate, thus leading to a dramatic drop in China’s population over the coming decades. The Western ‘Fake News’ media would have to invent another ‘Great Fake Famine’ in order to discredit China’s record, similar to their discredited propaganda against Mao’s ‘Great Leap Forward’.

    To paraphrase Mark Twain, the Western ‘fake’ news of the so-called ‘Great Chinese Famine’ is greatly exaggerated.

    • Replies: @Mulga Mumblebrain
  36. Malla says:
    @Mulga Mumblebrain

    What rubbish. The USA would have been even more prosperous if it had stayed home, never gone into Empire mode in Eurasia and reigned in its big greedy corporations at the same time stopped Cultural Marxist destruction of its traditional culture. As well has kept its demographics majority White. All this Empire building means they have actually wasted more American Tax payer (common American) money with the profits going to the tiny banker elites.

  37. Malla says:
    @Grahamsno(G64)

    Glad to know that you escaped the Covid carnage, hope that all’s well with you and family.

    Thanks Anna, same good wishes to you too.

    they are an extremely incompetent bunch not fit to polish the shoes of real intelligence agencies like the ISI

    Really? RAW (Research & Analysis Wing) did a pretty good job of riling up the Sikkimese Hindu majority against the Buddhist Sikkmese Chonyal King and absorbing Sikkim inside India, Imperialist style. This is the first thing RAW did after it was formed. Indian PM Indira Gandhi backstabbed the Sikkimese King like a bitch even though he was a honourary General in the Indian Army. Good ol fashion regime change. Why do you think the Kingdom of Bhutan kicked out all those Nepali Hindus? RAW also did regime change in Sri Lanka too. Screwed China friendly and India unfriendly Sri Lankan President Rajapaksha as well as similarly China friendly Nepali Prime Minister Oli. Not bad if you ask me.

    Pakistan’s been riding and wants badly to dismount has started roaring again with the US abandonment

    Yup that seems possible even if the Pakistani Army has destroyed the TTP (Pakistani Taliban) for now. Pakistani PM Imran Khan seems to be trying to take Pakistan away from Islamic fundamentalist mentality (while India goes Hindutva), but you never know when that society goes fundamentalist.
    In my opinion, the BRI MAY* end up being too expensive. The Chinese never understood colonialism properly, seeing it through Marxist tinted eyes (who doesn’t, we all do). I know the Chinese would say that this is not colonialism, we Chinese are superior culture (unlike the Western and Japanese subhuman monkeys) mixed with Revolutionary Maoism and caring for Third world people and all that. And I agree with them. But this “bringing up the Third World” sounds a bit similar to idealistic The White Man’s Burden or Japanese “Asia for the Asian” Pan Asianism.
    But lets not go there, this is not colonialism as we understand it, I understand, China is not occupying these places in some vast Empire, I understand. I compare it to colonialism in the sense that Colonialism, either Western or Japanese ended up in the long term a loss making enterprise. More so for Western because they waded more into brown black lands (the Japs were into high IQ Korea and Taiwan), which are low efficiency and expensive societies because of high corruption, lack of laws, low productivity, low trust societies, political uncertainty etc…. The Chinese may learn how “expensive” these countries are going to turn up in the long term and may end up losing hard earned money, money created on the work of the Chinese people. Just like how European colonialism was expensive in the long term. The BRI parts in Europe or South East Asia may turn out fine but the rest, we will see.
    MAY*–I wrote MAY thus one likely possibility, not certainty.

  38. Rahan says:
    @Joe Levantine

    If only one could buy stocks in the CCP itself…

  39. @Joe Levantine

    “buy low”. the folly of the markets was the perfect time for you to double down… I did.

  40. @Malla

    Yes, it is a positive move. Some “westerners” here think China will do as the USA did; they are projecting: China will not bomb its neighbours and neither will it cross oceans to bomb distant countries. The US insists on bombs and domination; China holds out the hand of trade and friendship.

    And guess what, USers! China is in Asia. Butt out and go home, yanqui.

    • Agree: Mulga Mumblebrain
  41. eah says:

    >Afghanistan’s Coming Boom

    Yeah, sure — Afghanistan has some of the lowest quality human capital on the planet; only the likes of Sub-Saharan Africa and Borneo are worse — the ‘boom’ that’s coming is yet another flood of those losers seeking to escape their shithole for the West, where they’re a fucking plague, responsible for a grossly disproportionate amount of crime (and welfare use) throughout Europe, including some spectacularly bestial ones like the recent drugging, rape, and murder of a 13 y/o girl (Leonie) in Austria.

    Mordfall Leonie

    In Germany, Afghans were responsible for the rape and murder of 19 y/o Marie Ladenburger (thrown in a river to drown after being raped and beaten unconscious), as well as the brutal stabbing death (in a Drogerie in front of her friends) of 15 y/o Mia Valentin.

    A sizable majority of inmates in Austria’s juvenile prisons are foreign born (an even larger fraction have Migrationshintergrund) — more than 10% of them are from Afghanistan.

  42. Anon[167] • Disclaimer says:
    @Malla

    Cheery picking and leaving most of the cherries .

    What’s new ?

    • Replies: @Malla
  43. @KA

    The Indian elites are bedeviled by the caste system, and their abject failure in comparison to China. An inferiority complex is often massively over-compensated for with delirious delusions of coming glory. India will, in any case, be uninhabitable by 2050, at the outside, because of climate destabilisation-and they won’t be alone.

  44. @antibeast

    The unfortunate truth is that anthropogenic climate destabilisation is irreversible in human time. Even if we ceased ALL greenhouse gas emissions today, at least one thousand years of climate chaos is guaranteed.

    • Replies: @antibeast
  45. antibeast says:
    @Mulga Mumblebrain

    Here’s a map showing the impact of climate change on the world in the future:

    Extreme weather events such as severe droughts as well as massive rainfall will occur more frequently, causing sharp reductions in marine life as well as over-flooding of human habitats. According to the map above, much of Alaska, Northern Canada, Northern Siberia and Northern Scandinavia would see melting permafrost, leading to higher ocean water levels all over the world. The Western USA, Central Mexico, Caribbean, Central America, Chile, Venezuela, Southern Europe, Northern Africa, Southern Africa, Levant, Anatolia, Afghanistan and Western Australia should expect a dramatic decrease in water runoff, leading to sharp reductions in both hydropower generation and agricultural production. South Asia, East Africa, Mongolia and Southeast Asia would suffer from increased rainfall, causing over-flooding of human habitats.

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