'Stupid coronavirus!' In uncertain times, we can help children through mindfulness and play

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Can I visit my boyfriend or my parents? Go fishing or bushwalking? Coronavirus rules in the Northern Territory and Tasmania

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Can I visit my boyfriend or my parents? Go fishing or bushwalking? Coronavirus rules in Western Australia

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Government secrecy is growing during the coronavirus pandemic

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How high will unemployment go? During the Great Depression, 1 in 4 Americans were out of work

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7 things public schools do besides teach kids academic basics

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Bonn 25 June 2015. The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) is a war-prone institution that poses the biggest threat to world peace. Since the disappearance of the Soviet Union, which turns out to be the greatest disaster for the stability of the international system, NATO expansionism and aggression is rampant. Although NATO was established to contain the Soviet Union, in reality, however, it has always been a complacent vehicle for U. S. hegemony.

After the Soviet break-up, NATO's illegal expansion in Eastern Europe was relatively successful as long as Russia kept quiet. President Vladimir Putin's speech at the Munich Security Conference in 2007, more accurately a gathering of Western war-hawks, should have rung the warning bells in the West. Explicitly, Putin scorched the U. S. for its policy and warned of NATO's expansionism eastward and the deployment of a missile defense shield that was directed at Russia.

Despite Putin's admonition and the disaster NATO has created in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria, Yemen, parts of Africa and the Ukraine, this military alliance seems to have learned nothing from its mistakes in the past. The voracity for world domination by the U. S. Empire seems insatiable. It doesn't make any difference who sits in the White House. U. S. Presidents differ only in nuances.

The creation of a "constructive chaos" was a special fad of the Bush-Warriors that heralded their vision of a "New Middle East". To divide and dismember the states of the region along religious and ethnic lines was first outlined by Odeh Yinon in an article in the periodical "Kivunim"1 (Direction) in 1982. Such a destruction would be in the Israeli interest, writes the author. What the author proposed over 30 years ago, is now executed by the U. S. and Saudi Arabia across the Middle East. It's only a matter of time until the latter will also be affected by this political "disease".

So far, the intervention of the U. S. and its European cronies across the Middle East was a "resounding success". After 13 years, the strongest military alliance had to leave Afghanistan defeated. There are still some tenth of thousands military advisers in Afghanistan that "train" the Afghan army, plus the well-paid mercenaries who keep the Western puppets going, but the moment they leave this "democratic" facade will collapse. The same holds true for Iraq or Libya.

U. S. Secretary of Defense, Ashton B. Carter, complained the Iraqi army lacks a "will to fight" the Islamic State, which the U. S. and its Arab friends have created in the first place. Although the U. S. military has equipped and trained the Iraqi army for the last four years, why aren’t they able to defeat a bunch of Islamic fanatics? The same holds true for the Afghan army. The Taliban just attacked the Afghan Parliament. It's only a matter of time until the monstrous U. S. embassy in the highly protected "Green Zone" in Bagdad will be attacked. Where there's a will, there's a way, as the German Chancellor stated with regard to the desolate situation in Greece and the European Union.

At the meeting in Brussels on 24 June, NATO decided on a huge military build-up on its Eastern flank. The Eastern front-line states will be armed to their teeth with military hardware and combat troops. The U. S. and the Brits came also up with a "new" plan to beef up the training of the Iraqi army,2 to instill into these Arab folks a "will to fight", taking their U.S. American and Western cronies as an example. The Brits and the U. S. have already sent troops back into Iraq to start their training operation all over again. According to the saying, the more the better, success will come the more NATO troops participate in it. Afghanistan is considered a "shining example".

Having accomplished the mission in Afghanistan successfully, there is plenty of manpower available to be transferred from Afghanistan to Iraq or the Ukraine. According to the motto, The soldiers must be kept busy. While the situation in Iraq is still out of control, the U. S. and its allies are eager to create the next war theater by "prepositioning" tanks and heavy artillery at the Russian border in order to make the allies feel safe.

Why are Europeans and above all Germans so eager to march with open eyes into a new Cold War with Russia? It seems that U.S. power and pressure are so irresistible that the politically ailing European Union has to go along with Ukrainian putschists, although the imposed sanctions against Russia hurt primarily Europeans. While the dogs of Western sanctions bark, the Eurasian caravan moves on, which could be seen at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) from 18 to 20 June.3

Remarkable was the meeting between Putin and the Saudi defense minister and deputy crown prince Mohammad bin Salman who is currently waging a war in Yemen. At the meeting with President Obama at Camp David, the Saudis snubbed Obama by sending only senior officials instead of King Salman. At the meeting with the other Arab leaders and officials Obama praised the "extraordinary friendship and relationship" between the U. S. and Saudi Arabia. Perhaps the days of this special relationship are numbered.

Dr. Ludwig Watzal works as a journalist and editor in Bonn Germany. He runs the bilingual blog between the lines. http://between-the-lines-ludwig-watzal.blogspot.de