The CIA’s allegation that Russia intervened in the U.S. presidential election to help Donald Trump is “fake news” being peddled by the Washington Post and New York Times.Did the Russians sabotage voting machines in the Midwest? That’s the sort of stuff U.S. spy agencies would brag about discovering. But no.Russia is accused of hacking the computer of Hillary Clinton’s campaign manager John Podesta and giving embarrassing information to WikiLeaks. But Julian Assange, WikiLeaks’ editor-in-chief, denied Russia was the source. (Politico, Nov. 3)Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina nonetheless declared, “I’m going after Russia in every way you can go after Russia. … I think they did interfere with our elections, and I want Putin personally to pay the price.” (Washington Post, Dec. 10)It wasn’t Russia that set up the Electoral College that’s sending Trump to the White House, even though he got 2.8 million fewer votes than Clinton. As Yale law professor Akhil Reed Amar has pointed out, the Electoral College was established to protect slavery. (Vox, Nov. 12)And it was not Russia that suppressed African-American and Latinx votes.The CIA claims against Russia are old news. “‘We have not drawn any evidentiary connection to any Russian intelligence service and WikiLeaks — none,’ said one U.S. official,” That’s what the Washington Post reported back on July 27.So why the clamor now? It probably has something to do with most of Aleppo being liberated by Syria’s elected government, which is aided by Russia and Iran. It’s a big defeat for the CIA.Attacking Russia for allegedly aiding Trump is also a way to attack this super-bigot from the right.Millions of people may be coming to Washington, D.C., on Jan. 20 to protest Trump’s inauguration. Blaming Russia is an attempt to divert the struggle.It’s easier to knock Exxon Mobil CEO Rex Tillerson, Trump’s apparent secretary of state nominee, for deals with Russia than to attack the oil giant for, say, exploiting Yemen.Democrats like New York Sen. Charles Schumer are yelling the loudest against Russia, while capitulating to Trump’s nomination of a virtual junta of generals in his cabinet.During the election campaign the ruling class and its capitalist state were split. The biggest banks and the CIA supported Clinton. Most of the small banks, oil frackers like Harold Hamm — the sort of forces that backed Barry Goldwater in 1964 — were for Trump.The FBI was also for Trump, and FBI Director James Comey may have helped tilt the elections by raising Clinton’s emails late in the campaign.The split between these two Gestapo-like agencies — the CIA and the FBI — has continued, with the FBI discounting the CIA’s claims about Russia. (CNN, Dec. 11)What’s ironic about the CIA’s “fake news” is that U.S. election consultants boasted about how they helped re-elect Russian President Boris Yeltsin in 1996. (Los Angeles Times, July 9, 1996) Wall Street used Yeltsin to help overthrow the Soviet Union, a tragic defeat for poor people and workers everywhere.Russia today has a capitalist government, but it’s not a vassal state like Saudi Arabia. To U.S. generals like “Mad Dog” James Mattis — Trump’s choice for defense secretary — Russia is 6 million square miles to attack and occupy.Our enemies are in the corporate boardrooms and the Pentagon, not in Moscow.FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare this
The latest World Exploration Trends report from SNL Metals & Mining, a group within S&P Global Market Intelligence, reveals that the global exploration sector continues to struggle against strong market headwinds. Key findings of the report include a 19% decline in worldwide nonferrous metals exploration budgets in 2015 compared with the previous year, as well as the lowering of the sector’s aggregate market capitalisation to levels not seen since early 2009.The mining industry’s estimated total budget for nonferrous metals exploration in 2015 was $9.2 billion, less than half the record $21.5 billion budgeted in 2012. An increasing number of junior companies are moving out of the sector by seeking opportunities in non-mining industries. As any future upward shift in market sentiment towards metals and mining is likely to be gradual and uneven, it could be some time before the juniors derive any practical benefit from an eventual upturn.Despite the troubles facing the junior sector, the number of active projects with drilling activity has remained stable over the past two years, with significant drill results remaining well above the levels reported in 2008-2009. Over the past 15 years exploration budgets have been shifting away from the grassroots work upon which new discoveries largely depend. With risk aversion continuing to plague the sector, companies are focusing their exploration activity on existing or developing mines to ensure an adequate level of reserves to support production.Early indications suggest that 2016 is unlikely to produce a rebound for the exploration sector; the research therefore projects about a 15% decline in exploration budgets for the year.